They have filed a conspiracy charge because she spoke at a protest against a confederate monument.
Lavrentiy Beria would be proud of them:
The felony case against Virginia’s most senior Black lawmaker, state Sen. L. Louise Lucas (D-Portsmouth), is a preposterous example of rogue local police making a mockery of justice.
Almost nothing about the charges against Ms. Lucas, the first African American and female president pro tempore of the 244-year-old state Senate, contains an iota of sense. Portsmouth police brought the charge of conspiracy to topple a Confederate monument without the assent of state prosecutors, which is highly unusual. No grand jury was convened to seek an indictment. The case involves Ms. Lucas making public statements, including to the police. Her statements may or may not have been wise; the idea that they amounted to taking part in a felonious conspiracy is farcical.
If Ms. Lucas committed any offense, it was to stick her nose into a matter over which she had no direct authority, which is more or less a state legislator’s job description.
The incident in question occurred around midday on June 10, amid protests that swept the nation following George Floyd’s killing in Minneapolis. Racial justice protesters and community leaders in Portsmouth, a majority-Black city, were intent on covering and defacing a prominent Confederate monument downtown, whose removal had been debated for several years. The monument — an obelisk ringed by statues of four military figures — had been covered by protesters the previous day, without police interference, then uncovered overnight. When two local NAACP leaders returned that morning to re-cover it, they were arrested.
That night, hours after Ms. Lucas departed, protests intensified, and the monument was defaced and vandalized. One of the soldier statues was pulled down, falling on a protester and gravely injuring him. At that point, police intervened. (The monument has since been dismantled and placed in storage.)
It was not until Aug. 17, more than two months later, that police got around to charging Ms. Lucas with conspiracy. That was after the local commonwealth’s attorney declined to do so — and no wonder, given the absence of evidence.
Ms. Lucas’s defenders contend that the case against her is payback for her advocacy of tough reform measures for law enforcement. There’s no evidence for that, either. Just as likely, it could be retribution by the police chief, whose resignation Ms. Lucas called for after the monument was pulled down while officers stood watching.
In fact, they waited until the Senate was coming into session to deal with comprehensive police reform, so this was more about trying to sabotage a vote on police accountability, a nakedly and corruptly political ploy:
Greene announced the warrants one day before Lucas was due to join other legislators in Richmond for a special session of the General Assembly called, in part, to address issues of racial inequity and police brutality raised after the killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis police custody in May.
Lucas was not in police custody and intended to attend the session, according to several Democrats who said they spoke with her on Monday.
These is no excuse for this.
The Portsmouth PD needs to be shut down,