Sons of Confederate Veterans urging members to stay away from Monument Avenue demonstrations

RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — Police in Richmond will be on high alert this weekend with rallies planned around the Robert E. Lee statue on Monument Avenue.

With much uncertainty surrounding what will take place on Monument Avenue Saturday, the Sons of Confederate Veterans tell 8News they are in no way affiliated with the group that planned the rally. They say that group is simply a bunch of out-of-towners looking to stir up trouble.

The New Confederate State of America, an organization based in Tennessee, planned a rally for Saturday aimed at preserving Confederate monuments.

Frank Earnest with the Virginia division of the Sons of Confederate Veterans says he’s encouraging members of his organization to stay away from the rally this weekend in light of the violence that erupted in Charlottesville in August.

“We make ourselves heard at the ballot box on voting day, on Election Day, and in the courts by going through the legal process, not through crazy acts in the streets and the cities,” Earnest said. “That’s not us. Never has been, never will be.”

The Sons of Confederate Veterans say they’ve never heard of the New Confederate States of America group but are denouncing violence and any acts of prejudice.

For more coverage of this weekend’s planned rallies, including parking regulations, click here.

Never miss another Facebook post from 8News

Find 8News on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram; send your news tips to iReport8@wric.com.