Charlottesville hires former U.S. Attorney to investigate city's response to rallies
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WSET) - The City of Charlottesville has hired a former U.S. Attorney to investigate the city's response to three events during the last few months.
The events being investigated are:
- The torch-light rally at Emancipation Park on May 13
- The rally of the Loyal White Knights of the KKK at Justice Park on July 8.
- The Unite the Right rally at Emancipation Park on August 12.
Tim Heaphy served as the U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Virginia, and will lead the independent, external review.
"As our City continues to recover from the rallies that brought great hate into our community, we must take time to reflect on our operational response to these tragic events," said City Manager Maurice Jones. "Mr. Heaphy brings the right mix of legal experience and critical eye to conduct an impartial review of what we as a local government working with our state partners did well and where we can improve."
According to the release posted on Mayor Signer's Facebook page, the review will be a full evaluation of the city's preparation for and response to those events, and will extend beyond the Charlottesville Police Department.
Officials say there will be "ample" opportunity for interested persons to provide feedback and information.
"The recent protests in Charlottesville presented a wide array of challenges to our community. It is crucial that we gather accurate information and attempt to learn from those difficult events," said Mr. Heaphy. "Our review will be thorough and objective, and will begin immediately. I look forward to presenting a comprehensive summary of what occurred in and around the protest events, and to formulating practical recommendations for improved future response."
A timetable for the completion of Mr. Heaphy's review has not been determined but he and his team will work expeditiously to research the City's operations and finalize their findings.