A third white supremacist accused of participating in a brutal attack on a black man at the “Unite the Right” rally in Charlottesville has been arrested, an Arkansas law enforcement official said Wednesday.
Jacob Scott Goodwin, 22, of Ward, Ark., is allegedly one of at least five men who can be seen in online video footage pummeling DeAndre Harris, a 20-year-old former special-education instruction assistant, in a parking garage after the Aug. 12 rally. The footage shows a man identified by police as Goodwin, wearing a tactical military helmet and carrying a large plastic shield, kicking Harris, who was on the ground. At one point, the man appears to hit Harris with his shield.
The attack on Harris, viewed tens of thousands of times on YouTube, has become a symbol of the violence and racial enmity that engulfed Charlottesville when white supremacists, Klan members and neo-Nazis clashed with counterprotesters. One counterprotester, Heather Heyer, 32, was killed when a Dodge Challenger allegedly driven by James Alex Fields Jr., a Nazi sympathizer, plowed into her and several others.
But the confrontation at the parking garage — next to the Charlottesville police headquarters — became a bigger flash point this week after Harris was charged with a crime in connection with the brawl.
A local magistrate issued an arrest warrant Monday for Harris on a felony charge of unlawful wounding, based on a complaint by Harold Ray Crews, a lawyer and self-described “Southern nationalist,” who alleges that Harris injured him by hitting him with a flashlight just before the garage brawl. The charge against Harris, who suffered a spinal injury and a head laceration that required 10 stitches, outraged Black Lives Matter activists but delighted white supremacists.
Hunter Wallace, a prominent white nationalist, issued a celebratory tweet, promising that “DeAndre Harris is going to jail.”
Goodwin’s arrest came Tuesday night after two other assailants were charged with malicious wounding weeks ago: Daniel P. Borden, 18, of Ohio and Alex Michael Ramos, 33, of Georgia.
Goodwin was taken into custody near his home town in central Arkansas by U.S. marshals, according to the Lonoke County Sheriff’s Office. He is being held at the sheriff’s detention center until he is extradited to Virginia, said Lt. Matt Edwards, a spokesman for the Lonoke County Sheriff’s Office. He did not know the specific charge against Goodwin.
The Charlottesville Police Department declined to comment on Goodwin’s arrest, and it did not issue a news release detailing his criminal charge.
Online sleuths — led by journalist and Black Lives Matter activist Shaun King — were the first to publicly identify Goodwin and the other two men charged with the attack. Ever since the rally, King and his volunteer investigators have been examining photos and video footage from the rally and the garage attack itself while also combing the Facebook pages of white supremacists to get names.
King outed Goodwin last month and turned his evidence over to Charlottesville police.
“Dear Jacob Scott Goodwin, age 22, of Ward, Arkansas,” King posted on his own Facebook page Sept. 24. “We have looked for you for a month. In the end it was your hair, your bracelets, your glasses, your tattoo on your forearm, the white supremacist pins and necklaces, and your own bragging online that helped us identify you as one of the felony attackers of DeAndre Harris in Charlottesville. Soon, you will be arrested.”
Goodwin hasn’t responded to requests for comment.
In an interview with The Washington Post before Goodwin’s arrest, his mother, Tamera Goodwin, confirmed that her son was in the parking garage during the attack and was the one wearing the military tactical gear and carrying the plastic shield. Goodwin also wore two pins — one with the number 88, a code for “Heil Hitler,” and the other with the logo for the Traditionalist Worker Party, a white nationalist group run by Matthew Heimbach.
“I told him, ‘It does look like you kick him,’ but he said, ‘No, Mom, I didn’t,’ ” said the mother, who attended the rally.
On Wednesday morning, King posted a celebratory announcement on Facebook.
“GREAT NEWS. Jacob Goodwin was just arrested for the brutal assault of DeAndre Harris. Living in Arkansas. Will be extradited to Virginia,” he wrote, attaching Goodwin’s mug shot.
Later, King issued one more post. There was still work to do, he said. The remaining men in the video needed to be found and identified — and a successful hunt would be handsomely rewarded.
“IMPORTANT: We are increasing our reward to $50,000 for the identification of these two violent white supremacists who viciously attacked DeAndre Harris in Charlottesville. What are their names? All sources will remain anonymous. firstname.lastname@example.org.”