Jury deliberates case of fatal crash at Charlottesville rally

James Alex Fields, Jr., 20, of Maumee, Ohio was arrested on suspicion of second-degree murder, and the car that rammed into the Charlottesville rally, Photo Date: 8/12/2017 / Photo: Abermarle Charlottesville Regional Jail / (MGN)
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CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (AP) - A defense attorney has told a jury that an Ohio man accused in a deadly car attack on counter-protesters at a white nationalist rally felt he was in danger and people were "coming at him" when he drove his car into a crowd.

James Alex Fields Jr. is accused of first-degree murder and other charges.

No one disputes that Fields drove his car into the counter-protesters during a "Unite the Right" rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, on Aug. 12, 2017, but prosecutors and defense attorneys disagree on his intent.

In her closing argument Thursday, defense attorney Denise Lunsford said Fields had urine thrown on him and had witnessed violent clashes between the two sides earlier in the day. She said when he spotted a large crowd of counter-protesters around two other cars, he thought he would be attacked.

Prosecutors told the jury that no one was near Fields' car when he slowly backed up, then sped into the crowd, tossing bodies into the air.

Jurors told the judge they wish to begin deliberating Friday morning.

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