CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (AP) — A Virginia woman said Friday that her son told her he got in a jail fight with the man accused of driving a car into counterprotesters at a white nationalist rally.
Lucinda Carter spoke with The Associated Press on Friday, saying her son, Timothy Brown, called her from jail in Charlottesville and told her he got in a fight with James Fields.
Fields is charged with first-degree murder and other counts in the death of Heather Heyer, who was killed in the attack Aug. 12, 2017, after authorities had forced the gathering of white nationalists to disband.
Brown, a friend of Heyer, said he hit Fields twice in the face, according to Carter. She said she had only a brief conversation with her son, but expects him to face charges.
When asked what she suspects led to the altercation, Carter said, "I think Timothy was affected by the lady that got killed."
Col. Martin Kumer, superintendent of the Albemarle-Charlottesville Regional Jail, said an investigation is ongoing and he doesn't expect to release information this week.
An attorney for Fields, who is from Maumee, Ohio, didn't respond to a request for comment.
Kumer wouldn't confirm whether Brown was involved, but he did confirm that a Timothy Brown, 26, had been in custody there since early October on charges of simple assault and property destruction.
Jay Scott, a friend of Brown's who said he was with him and Heyer in downtown Charlottesville when the car plowed into the crowd, learned of the jail fight and started a GoFundMe page this week to raise money for an attorney.
"He shouldn't have to fight it alone," said Scott.
The "Unite the Right" rally drew hundreds of white nationalists to the college town, where officials planned to remove a statue of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee. Hundreds more came out to protest against the white nationalists.
Prosecutors allege that after the crowd broke up, Fields — who has been described by authorities and others who knew him as an admirer of Adolf Hitler — drove his car toward the area where a racially diverse group of people had gathered to protest the rally. They say he rapidly accelerated his gray Dodge Challenger into the crowd. The car then reversed and fled.
Fields was arrested a relatively short while after the attack. Kumer said he was not aware of any other assaults or threats against Fields during his time in custody.
Fields is scheduled to go on trial next month on the state charges he faces. He also faces federal hate crime charges.