Wednesday News: Take them down


GOVERNOR COOPER CALLS FOR REMOVAL OF CONFEDERATE MONUMENTS FROM STATE GROUNDS: Confederate statues should be removed from state property, Gov. Roy Cooper said in a public message Tuesday. He wrote a statement posted to the online publishing platform Medium. “Some people cling to the belief that the Civil War was fought over states’ rights. But history is not on their side,” Cooper wrote. “We cannot continue to glorify a war against the United States of America fought in the defense of slavery. These monuments should come down. Our Civil War history is important, but it belongs in textbooks and museums – not a place of allegiance on our Capitol grounds.”

CITY OF BALTIMORE REMOVES CONFEDERATE STATUES IN THE MIDDLE OF THE NIGHT: Confederate monuments have been removed overnight in Baltimore. Local news outlets report that workers hauled the monuments away early Wednesday, days after a white nationalist rally in Virginia turned deadly. WBAL-TV reports that a crane removed a monument to Robert E. Lee and Thomas J. "Stonewall" Jackson" from its pedestal around 3 a.m. and placed it on a flatbed truck 45 minutes later. Baltimore Mayor Catherine Pugh told the newspaper that crews began removing the city's four Confederate monuments late Tuesday and finished around 5:30 a.m. Wednesday. Pugh said the monuments "needed to come down." The mayor watched as workers removed the statues in the dark.

WHITE SUPREMACIST ACTIVE DUTY MARINES ARRESTED AT CONFEDERATE RALLY MAY HAVE CHARGES DROPPED: It looks like two U.S. Marines charged with trespassing during a May rally at the Old Courthouse could beat the charges, but they really wanted to plead guilty and leave. “My client is in the Marine Corps,” said defense attorney Dan Monroe. “He wants to get this over with.” They face misdemeanor charges, which the military does not like, but they are probably in more trouble because while they were on that roof, they let down a banner that read, “He who controls the past controls the future,” a quote from George Orwell’s novel “1984,” and also featuring an “Identitarian” symbol and the letters “YWNRU” on the side. The acronym stands for “You will not replace us,” the slogan chanted by demonstrators carrying torches in Charlottesville, Va., last weekend and on May 13 at protests surrounding the removal of a Confederate monument. According to a protest leader, the slogan is an affirmation of being white.

POLICE SEEMED INDIFFERENT OVER BLACK MAN BEATEN BY GANG OF WHITE SUPREMACISTS: A Virginia man says police failed to come to his aid as he was beaten by white supremacists during Saturday's violent protests in Charlottesville, Virginia, that led to three deaths. Photos and video of the beating inflicted on 21-year-old DeAndre Harris have gone viral. Police said Tuesday they are investigating the incident, portions of which were captured on video. One person of interest has been identified, but no arrests have been made, city spokeswoman Miriam Dickler said in a text message. Harris was beaten in a parking garage right next to the city police station. Zach Roberts, a documentary photographer, said he told police officers immediately after the beating what occurred and that he had photos of the attack, but they were not interested at the time.

BERGER COUGHS UP $5,500 FOR ILLEGAL DONATIONS TO HIS CAMPAIGN ACCOUNT: In addition to campaign donations that exceeded per-person or per-entity maximums set out in state law, auditors looked at donations that appeared to come during legislative sessions and from entities forbidden from donating during those sessions. The Berger campaign reached back into its records to show those donations were either made at fundraisers just before session or mailed prior to the session's start. The audit also questioned $1,500 a month the Berger campaign pays to co-occupy his law office in Eden. The campaign responded that the figure also covers a shared secretary, telephone costs and utilities. It provided real estate appraisals from the surrounding area to make its case that the rent is appropriate.