Federal Trial Begins for Christopher Cantwell, Known as the 'Crying Nazi' From the 'Unite the Right' Rally
In January 2020, Cantwell was charged with threatening a person using the online messaging app Telegram, authorities said.
On Tuesday began the trial of Christopher Cantwell, a white nationalist known as the "Crying Nazi," who is facing federal threatening, extortion and cyberstalking charges. The 39-year-old from Keene, New Hampshire is accused of threatening to rape the wife of a person with whom he was having a dispute.
Cantwell had previously reported the other group of alleged white supremacists, who are podcasters to the FBI, for allegedly harassing him, according to court filings. He had also notified his local police on the matter, saying he was getting taunted and harassed online by the group.
But in January 2020, Cantwell was charged with threatening a person using the online messaging app Telegram, authorities said. The FBI alleges that Cantwell threatened a man to get the personal identifying information of another man with whom he was feuding. He is alleged to have told the victim over the app Telegram that if he didn't hand over the information, he would attack his wife.
Cantwell became one of the most familiar faces of the 2016 “Unite the Right” white nationalist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, after he was featured in a Vice News documentary on the far right that showed him chanting "Jews will not replace us."
Following the release of the footage from Vice, he was dubbed the “Crying Nazi” after he was seen fighting back tears as he announced he was wanted in Virginia because two people went to police claiming he had used a chemical spray on them and others during one night of clashes between the white nationalists and counter-protestors. Cantwell first said he acted in self-defense.
He later pleaded guilty to assault after he was accused of using pepper spray against two counter-protesters during a torchlight march at the University of Virginia.
Cantwell pleaded not guilty in January to the charges he currently faces. He wore a clear mask and a dress shirt in federal court in Concord, the Associated Press reported. All others in the courtroom wore face masks because of the coronavirus pandemic.
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