Prosecutors: Virginia city can move Confederate monument
NORFOLK, Va. (AP) — A Virginia city’s top prosecutor and the state’s attorney general say Norfolk can relocate a Confederate monument, despite a state law barring the removal of war memorials.
The two filed a motion Tuesday seeking to dismiss a city lawsuit that says the state law infringes on its right to free speech. Norfolk Commonwealth’s Attorney Greg Underwood and Attorney General Mark Herring say they don’t believe the law applies to Norfolk’s 80-foot (24-meter) monument and they wouldn’t try to enforce it.
The 1904 law initially applied to counties and was expanded in 1997. The city’s monument was erected in 1907. Herring has previously issued an opinion saying the law didn’t apply retroactively.
What happens next with the monument wasn’t immediately clear. The city attorney says his office is reviewing the filings.