AP NEWS

Hearing rescheduled for man accused of moving auction block

March 13, 2020 GMT

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (AP) — A court hearing for a man accused of removing a plaque that marks where slave auctions were held in the Virginia city of Charlottesville has been rescheduled for June.

The Daily Progress reports that the hearing was originally scheduled for Thursday.

Police say that Richard H. Allan, III, 75, admitted to taking the historic marker in the city where a deadly white nationalist rally was held in 2017.

Allan told multiple news outlets that he removed the plaque because he believed it was insulting to enslaved Africans and their descendants.

Allan told The Washington Post that he removed the historic marker with a crowbar and threw the plaque into the James River.

Allan told The Post he was among the group of counterprotesters at the deadly “Unite the Right” in Charlottesville in 2017. The rally turned violent when James Alex Fields Jr., an avowed white supremacist, admitted to deliberately driving his car into counterprotesters who showed up to demonstrate against the white nationalists.

Fields was convicted in the death of anti-racism activist Heather Heyer and for injuring dozens more. He was sentenced to life in prison plus 419 years, but court records show he plans to appeal his convictions.

Allan was charged with felony grand larceny and felony possession of burglarious tools, police said in the press release. He was being held in jail until a bail review hearing.