In Feburary 2017, the Charlottesville city council voted to remove a statue of Confederate general Robert E. Lee from a public park near the Downtown Mall. Over the next several months, various groups held demonstrations and filed lawsuits back and forth in support of and opposition against the decision.
In July, around 50 members of the Loyal White Knights of the Ku Klux Klan rallied at Justice Park, the contested home of a statue of Confederate general Thomas "Stonewall" Jackson, and were met by over 1,000 protesters.
In August, the white nationalist Unite the Right rally was declared an unlawful assembly before it could begin after fights continued to break out between alt-right groups and counter-protesters. Several hours later, a car was driven into a crowd of counter-protesters, killing Heather Heyer and injuring dozens more.
[Graphic warning] This gallery contains images of violence