CHAPEL HILL, N.C. — Four people accused of bringing down the Silent Sam statue on the campus of the University of North Carolina sat in front of a judge Thursday for day one of their trial, WTVD reports.
Just moments before entering the Orange County courtroom, the four defendants doubled down on their morals.
“We don’t want your monuments of white supremacy. We don’t want your white supremacy. And we’ll continue to fight because that’s who we are,” defendant Raul Jiminez said.
Jiminez along with Shawn Birchfield-Finn, Jonathan Fuller, and Lauren Aucoin are on trial because of their alleged involvement in the toppling of the Silent Sam statue in August of last year.
“They tell us that confederate monuments commemorate history. Silent Sam and all the monuments for white supremacy not only acknowledge white America but glorify it,” defendant Lauren Aucoin said.
Before entering the courthouse one of the defendants, Birchfield-Finn, was taken away in handcuffs for allegedly bringing a weapon onto courthouse property. He eventually joined the other defendants who all pleaded not guilty.