(PM) – Virginia Governor Ralph Northam issued a state of emergency for Richmond from Friday to Tuesday. Northam stated that there are “real identified threats” ahead of a scheduled gun rights rally on Monday.
In a statement, Northam stated that: “We support citizens’ rights to peacefully protest and express their views to their elected officials. But we must also keep the public, as well as those who work around Capitol Square, safe.”
Northam also stated that there are credible threats of violence, including from white nationalists and out-of-state militia plans.
Northam stated that threats were received on plans to storm the Capitol Building and use weaponized drones. According to a state official, a person posted an image of a rifle saying there are “great sight angles from certain buildings” near Capitol Square.
Monday’s rally is a protest of multiple proposed gun rights bills considered in the General Assembly. These include potential bans on ‘assault weapons’, red flag laws, and universal background checks.
The State of Emergency bans all weapons at the state capitol building.