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Confederate Statue Toppling Cases Start With a Dismissal

Durham-statue_20170814_via_BarryYeoman.jpg
Barry Yeoman

DURHAM, N.C. (AP) — A North Carolina judge trying protesters accused of toppling a Confederate statue has dismissed the criminal case against one of them.

Dante Strobino was tried Monday on charges including defacing public property and conspiracy in the August 2017 toppling of the monument outside a Durham government building. Seven others are expected to be tried individually after Strobino.

After testimony from investigators and other witnesses, the defense moved to dismiss the case. Durham County District Court Judge Fred Battaglia then ruled prosecutors had failed to identify Strobino as a perpetrator and hadn't shown there was a conspiracy. The cases are being heard before Judge Battaglia without a jury.

The Durham Confederate statue was pulled down in the days after a deadly violence at a Charlottesville, Virginia, rally started by white nationalists.

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