White supremacist leader Richard Spencer spoke yesterday at the University of Florida in Gainesville. While violence was anticipated, nobody predicted the event would end in gunshots and charges of attempted murder.
Three supporters of Spencer, all white nationalists, were in a vehicle together as one of the men fired a shot into a crowd of nearby protestors. The men have been identified as William Henry Fears, 30; Golton Gene Fears, 28; and Tyler Tenbrink, 29. They were all from Texas.
One report indicated that a protestor struck the Jeep carrying the white nationalists. This was allegedly after the men in the Jeep were shouting racist remarks and threats toward the crowd. Witnesses heard the men say “I’m going to fucking kill you,” along with “kill them,” and “shoot them.” That’s when Tenbrink fired the shot which struck a nearby building.
Below is a statement from the Gainesville Police Department:
Shortly before 5:30pm, it was reported that a silver Jeep stopped to argue with a group of protesters and began threatening, offering Nazi salutes and shouting chants about Hitler to the group that was near the bus stop. During the altercation, Tenbrink produced a handgun while the Fears brothers encouraged him to shoot at the victims. Tenbrink fired a single shot at the group which thankfully missed the group and struck a nearby building.
One of the men, William Fears, was interviewed just hours before the shooting. Fears said he also attended the “Unite the Right” rally in Virginia, where Heather Heyer was run over by another white supremacist.
Fears complained about Governor Rick Scott declaring a state of emergency in regards to the event. He bemoaned his view that child predators are permitted to have “twisted sexual conventions,” but “if a man says whites have right to exist they have to declare a state of emergency.”
Below is a clip of the Fears interview:
— Nadeen Yanes (@NadeenNews6) October 19, 2017
The men were apprehended quickly because one of the victims was able to take note of a license plate number.
“I am amazed that immediately after being shot at, a victim had the forethought to get the vehicle’s license number,” Gainesville police Officer Ben Tobias said. “That key piece of information allowed officials from every level of multiple agencies to quickly identify and arrest these persons. This was an amazing team effort by everyone involved.”
All three men now sit in the Alachua County Jail on charges of attempted homicide.
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