Donald Trump has agitated his followers, especially right-wing extremists, with his fiery campaign rhetoric. His message to them was “stand back and stand by,” according to The Rolling Stone magazine. A number of these groups considered this a call to arms.
Pro-Trump caravans have been crawling across the country just spoiling for a fight. Dubbed the Trump Train, a caravan of supporters clashed with Richmond, Virginia residents. A group of anti-Trump residents tried to block the caravan, according to The Richmond News site.
When the Trump Train tried to pass a traffic circle on Sunday, the police blocked off the area to traffic. Lee Circle has been the location of “racial justice protests for several months.” Witnesses heard gunshots, and one man discovered a bullet hole in his car.
At least one Trump supporter in the caravan sprayed chemical irritants on the crowd. Another man said he narrowly avoided being run over by jumping onto the hood of a passing car. Another man said he ducked just in time as someone fired a gun at him from a truck. The gunshot occurred after someone else pulled a Trump flag off one of the caravan vehicles:
‘Richmond police said a woman reported at 4:18 p.m. that she had been pepper-sprayed by someone from one of the vehicles. A few minutes later, officers responded to Lee Circle to investigate a report of an unoccupied vehicle that had been struck once by gunfire.’
The Richmond Police Department (RPD) released a statement that read:
‘No other injuries were reported to the Richmond Police Department. Officers responded to clear the area and investigate the assault.’
In an interview, pedestrian Gary Fogel said he had been trying to cross Monument Avenue in the circle. Then, a car tried to hit him. He jumped upon its hood to save himself bloodying his knees:
‘I’d be dead right now. He stopped and I flew off the car and he took off around me.’
Jody Adams came to the Lee Statue Sunday, because he wanted to record Trump supporters passing by. He caught a guy pulling a Trump flag off of one of the pickups. Then, he heard a gunshot and later found a bullet hole in the side of his car:
‘The guys in the cars got upset.’
Given Talor said he was with the man who grabbed the Trump flags from the caravan. Someone opened a truck window and began yelling at Talor.
Anti-Trumper Lawrence West said one of the trucks “pepper-sprayed a woman.” West said he started yelling at one of the vehicles for having “a child in the backseat:”
“They came down here to instigate a confrontation.’
First District seat on the Richmond City Council candidate Mike Dickinson rode in a pickup at the front of the pro-Trump caravan. He blamed the crowds for standing in the road and attempting to stop the caravan. People were “beating on cars and that one person punched and broke a Trump supporter’s car window.” Someone threw a liquor bottle at Dickinson:
‘Seven or eight people jumped out in the road in front of us. They were walking out into traffic and sitting down. If anybody was hit, it was their own fault. [He] heard something like a firecracker [but] could not confirm or deny [gunfire.]’
‘I’m a taxpayer and I can go anywhere I want in the city anytime. Monument Avenue is owned by “We the People.” How is it aggressive to fly an American flag?’
Dickinson said this Trump Train 2 was the second consecutive weekend that such a caravan had passed by this location. He claimed up to 350 vehicles were in the train. Other witnesses said 15 to 40 vehicles.
Featured image is a screenshot via YouTube.
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