Christopher Cantwell, who was featured in the visceral VICE News documentary on the Charlottesville hate rally, is now wanted by authorities.
The Boston Globe reported on Thursday evening that the Virginia Commonwealth Attorney’s office has issued two felony warrants for Cantwell on charges of illegal use of gases and injury by a caustic agent or explosive. The news was also reported by Cantwell’s hometown paper — the Keene Sentinel — in New Hampshire.
Cantwell reportedly admitted to Sentinel reporters that he used pepper spray on some of the counter-protesters present in Charlottesville on the first of two separate clashes with protesters in Charlottesville. Cantwell attended a torch-lit march in Charlottesville on Friday night as well as the larger white supremacist gathering on Saturday afternoon, which culminated in neo-Nazi James Fields allegedly running over dozens of counter-protesters in a Dodge Challenger, killing 32-year-old Heather Heyer.
In a video he recorded several days after the Charlottesville riots, Cantwell is seen choking back tears as he shares his fears of being arrested as a result of his protest. VICE News’ Elle Reeve, who was embedded with Cantwell and multiple other neo-Nazis and white supremacists, interviewed Cantwell multiple times for her documentary Charlottesville: Race and Terror, getting Cantwell to say on the record that he had no remorse for Heyer’s death — which he called justified — promising that more fatalities would occur before his work was done.
“I’m carrying a pistol, I go to the gym all the time, I’m trying to make myself more capable of violence,” he told Reeve. “The fact that no one on our side died, I’d go ahead and call that points for us. The fact that none of our people killed anyone unjustly is a plus for us. We showed our rivals we won’t be cowed.”
As of this writing, Christopher Cantwell’s exact whereabouts are unknown, and he has not yet turned himself in to Virginia authorities.
Matthew P. Robbins is an economics reporter for Grit Post covering wages, budgets, and taxes. He lives in Chicago, Illinois with his husband and two cats.