SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — At least seven people were stabbed after a clash between members of right-wing groups and “anti-fascists” outside the California state Capitol building in Sacramento.
Officer Matt McPhail with the Sacramento Police Department says none of the injuries are believed to be life-threatening.
California Highway Patrol Officer George Granada says about 30 members of the Traditionalist Worker Party gathered at the capitol for a rally when they were met by about 400 counter-protesters and a fight broke out around noon Sunday.
The Traditionalist Workers Party, often linked to white supremacy and far-right causes, had scheduled and received a permit to protest at noon Sunday in front of the Capitol. McPhail says a group of counter-protesters showed up to demonstrate against them.
Matthew Heimbach, chairman of the Traditionalist Worker Party, tells the Los Angeles Times that his group and the Golden State Skinheads organized the Sunday rally.
Vice chairman Matt Parrott, who was not present at the Sacramento rally, says it was a peaceful march and blamed “leftist radicals” for instigating the violence. Heimbach says that in the clash, one of their marchers had been stabbed in an artery and six of the “anti-fascists” had also been stabbed.
A message left at a phone number for the Traditionalist Worker Party was not immediately returned to The Associated Press.
A post recently uploaded to site of the Traditionalist Youth Network says TWP members planned to march in Sacramento to protest against globalization and in defense of the right to free expression. They say they expected to be outnumbered 10-to-1 by counter-protesters.
The Southern Poverty Law Center has described TWP as a group formed in 2015 as the political wing of the Traditionalist Youth Network, which aims to “indoctrinate high school and college students into white nationalism.”
It was not immediately clear which group the victims belonged to, though it appeared many were from the counter protest, FOX 40 reports.
No arrests were made.