Report: Helicopter was responding to Charlottesville violence before crash, police say

Report: Helicopter was responding to Charlottesville violence before crash, police say
White nationalist demonstrators walk through town after their rally was declared illegal near Lee Park in Charlottesville, Virginia, on Saturday.
Source: Steve Helber/AP
White nationalist demonstrators walk through town after their rally was declared illegal near Lee Park in Charlottesville, Virginia, on Saturday.
Source: Steve Helber/AP

Officials say a helicopter crash near Charlottesville, Virginia, that killed two people Saturday was linked to the white nationalist rally that occurred the same day, the Associated Press reported.

Virginia State Police said the helicopter “was assisting public safety resources with the ongoing situation in Charlottesville” when it crashed, WVIR reported. Authorities are still investigating the cause of the crash.

The pilot, Lt. H. Jay Cullen, and trooper-pilot Berke M.M. Bates were killed in the incident.

A spokesperson for the Virginia State Police did not immediately respond to Mic’s request for comment.

President Donald Trump responded to news of the helicopter crash on Twitter, expressing his “deepest condolences to the families and fellow officers of the VA State Police who died today.”

“You’re all among the best this nation produces,” he wrote.

Aug. 12, 9:12 p.m.: This story has been updated.