Suspect pleads responsible to having firearms at Lee statue clash

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — A man found with an assault rifle, a handgun and physique armor following a war of phrases with protestors at the Robert E. Lee statue in Virginia’s capital has been charged with a federal firearms violation.

Matthew Lee Frezza, 37, pleaded responsible in U.S. District Court in Richmond on Tuesday to possessing a firearm and ammunition as a convicted felon, the U.S. Criminal professional’s Set of dwelling of job for the Jap District of Virginia mentioned in a disclose.

Prosecutors mentioned Richmond Police officers spotted “a caravan” of three trucks driving recklessly end to the Robert E. Lee Monument on June 12 and pulled one of the vital trucks over. Officers noticed Frezza within the entrance passenger seat of the truck, besides to 2 other occupants who were all armed with weapons, along side assault rifles.

Police stumbled on a 9 mm semiautomatic pistol, a homemade assault-model rifle and eight clips or magazines of ammunition on Frezza, in step with court docket paperwork.

Richmond Police comprise beforehand mentioned they noticed plenty of pickup trucks skill a bunch that had dismounted their bicycles within the traffic lanes, and “phrases were exchanged between the people and the drivers of the pickup trucks,” in step with The Richmond Situations-Dispatch.

One amongst the trucks ran over a bicycle while driving off, but it became unclear whether or now not someone became injured, the newspaper mentioned.

The Lee statue, along with other Confederate memorials along Monument Avenue and at some level of town, were rallying parts and sites of frequent clashes with police at some level of this summer’s demonstrations in opposition to racial injustice.

Frezza became situation to be sentenced Dec. 10.

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