When white supremacists descended unto Charlottesville, Virginia to protest the removal of Confederate statues earlier in the month, violence ensued. At a rally where counter-protesters gathered, 20-year-old James Alex Fields Jr. drove his Dodge Challenger into a crowd of people, killing Heather Heyer, a 32-year-old paralegal who fought for the rights of the disenfranchised, and injuring more. Near the Charlottesville Police Department, a group of men physically attacked 20-year-old Deandre Harris, who doesn’t know if he’d be alive today if his friends hadn’t intervened. In the weeks since the events at Charlottesville shook the country, people have used social media to ID those who turned to violence, and the police has started to issue arrest warrants. Last week, Charlottesville police arrested 18-year-old Daniel P. Borden in connection with the aggravated assault. The department also released a wanted poster for 33-year-old Alex Michael Ramos, of Marietta, Georgia.
Ramos turned himself in on Monday evening, according to WRAL. He denies the attack was racially motivated and instead stated it was a “defensive attack.” Ramos told WGCL that he attended the “Unite the Rally” marches because he’s conservative. “There were some non-racist members who were going to a free speech rally,” he added. He also said that he only hit Harris once, but that the other men hit the 20-year-old with sticks and shields.
Previously, Ramos denied that he could be racist because of his Puerto Rican ancestry. “I need to say some shit about the UTR, and I need to say some shit about racism, ’cause I’m not fucking racist, I’m Spanish,” he said in a video. “I’m Puerto Rican. Yeah, there are some Puerto Rican racist people out there, but I’m not one of them. And I need people to know that shit.”