Man Sentenced To Pay $1 For Punching 'Unite The Right' Organizer In Face
Charlottesville, VA – A jury fined a man only one dollar for punching the organizer of a white nationalist rally held in Charlottesville.
Jason Kessler was one of the organizers of the controversial “Unite the Right” rally in August of 2017 where a Heather Heyer was fatally run down by an alleged white supremacist.
Unlike many "patriot" rallies that are falsely labeled as racist, the attendees of the Unite the Right rally were actually predominately self-professed racists and included numerous white supremacist groups.
Kessler was attacked the day after the really when he attempted to give remarks about what happened at the permitted location.
Numerous videos filmed by multiple sources showed Jeffrey Winder attacked Kessler on Aug. 13, 2017 as he attempted to hold a press conference, NPR reported.
Videos showed Kessler speaking to a crowd who was chanting over him so that he could not be heard.
Protesters began surrounding Kessler, and then the mob turned violent, and eventually chased him away from his own event.
Winder was captured on video punching Kessler as he tried to flee.
“I was attacked in front of the whole world, and then people made fun of me for it,” he told The Daily Progress.
Kessler has maintained that while he was not physically injured during the attack, he suffered emotional trauma from the frightening incident.
Initially, Winder denied he had been the one to throw a punch that struck Kessler in the head and shoulders.
However, after WVIR identified him as “the man who punched Kessler in the face,” Winder seemed happy to bask in the credit although he never actually admitted to the attack, according to NPR.
"He [Kessler] had an incredible amount of nerve coming in front of the people of Charlottesville after the pain, suffering, and terror that he brought on the community. He should never be allowed to show his face in town again,” Winder told WVIR.
Winder was arrested and faced a maximum possible sentence of one year in jail and a $2,500 fine, Rolling Stone reported.
He was convicted of misdemeanor assault on Kessler, and given a 30-day suspended sentence, The Daily Progress reported.
But Winder appealed the slap on the wrist. And while the jury upheld his conviction, they fined him only a single dollar as a penalty.
“It appears that a jury of his peers agrees—and may have just settled a long-standing debate over the morality of punching white supremacists,” Rolling Stone opined in the wake of the news.
Kessler told The Daily Progress that he planned to sue the city and the Charlottesville Police Department for $117 million for “failing to protect him” at the press conference, despite the fact he hadn't properly notified them of when and where he would be speaking.
“I told them when the conference was, and they should have been there,” Kessler said. “When I go anywhere, I always show up 15 minutes early.”