KEY POINTS

  • There have been 17 documented incidents of drivers using their cars to ram into George Floyd protestors
  • Some liberals claim right-wingers are behind these continuing spate of attacks
  • The racist that ran over and killed Heather Heyer in Charlottesville in August 2017 shared memes about plowing a car into protesters before actually doing so

There have been at least 17 documented cases where vehicle drivers seem to have intentionally rammed their cars, SUVs and trucks into George Floyd protestors since these nationwide protests began May 26.

It isn't clear at this time if the drivers of these vehicles were just angry at protestors who insulted them, or maybe for blocking the roads. But some in the ranks share a growing belief many of these drivers are Trump supporters, right-wing hard cases, or racists out to kill them.

Their suspicions are founded on the fact white supremacist James Alex Fields Jr. shared memes about plowing a car into protesters before his deadly and deliberate ramming attack at Charlottesville, Virginia on Aug. 11, 2017. His attack killed protestor Heather Heyer and injured 19 other people. Fields committed this horrific crime during the Unite the Right rally.

“For the right, encouragement is done in more implicit ways, through either memes that make light of running over protestors or statements that encourage it,” said Ari Weil to BuzzFeed News. “Examples include describing protesters as ‘speed bumps’ or writing, ‘If protesters get in my way, I'll run them over.’”

Weil is the deputy research director for the militant propaganda analysis team at the University of Chicago’s Chicago Project on Security and Threats. He said he's tracked more than a dozen incidents last week of people ramming into protesters, which means some people are intentionally turning cars into weapons.

“It’s being used as a weapon to bulldoze human bodies," said Chinyere Tutashinda, director of the BlackOut Collective. “I think we’ve definitely seen an increase of [vehicle rammings] happening at protests. They’re very scary and concerning. I can’t help but get a stark reminder of what happened in Charlottesville."

BuzzFeed News has listed down 17 of these ramming incidents. All of these incidents made it to Twitter and all have either videos or photos of the event.

In addition, there are four incidents involving cops running over protestors, including one where two cop cars of the New York City Police Department ran over people in Brooklyn. On the other hand, there have been two incidents where NYPD cops were hit by speeding vehicles.

Some on the left believe right-wingers and Trump supporters share a belief the ongoing wave of George Floyd protests sweeping the United States since May 26 are left-wing or liberal plots to destabilize the country and topple president Donald Trump.

NYPD officers arrest protestors during a "Black Lives Matter" demonstration in New York City NYPD officers arrest protestors during a "Black Lives Matter" demonstration in New York City Photo: AFP / Johannes EISELE

It's clear racist groups have long seen running over liberal protestors as legal. Before they began their infamous white supremacist rally on Aug. 11, 2017, members of Unite the Right discussed the legality of running over people with cars.

A tweet during this time said: "Attendees of #UniteTheRight in #Charlottesville discuss legality of plowing into protesters with a vehicle, less than one month before rally."

Today, some liberals adamantly claim conservative hotheads are using cars as weapons and are intentionally driving into and running over protestors with their vehicles.

Someone with the Twitter handle  "Whoever threw that paper your moms a hoe," whose profile says "Here to cause problems people I don’t know LLC," tweeted: "I support running over protesters/rioters 100% if you got a problem let me know."

He retweeted a Black Lives Matter post with a video showing a protestor being hit by a car. The caption read: "SOMEONE PLEASE TELL ME YOU GOT THEIR LICENSE PLATE. SOMEONE GOT RAN OVER BY TRUMP SUPPORTERS."

It's not known if this person is a right-wing supporter, but his message seems to have been taken to heart by some of the 17 drivers that have run over George Floyd protestors the past few days.

A tweeter named FITBOY MIKEYY shared a video showing an SUV running over two protestors. He wrote: "We were out here protesting peacefully and a stupid ass trump supporter comes and hits us with their car. They hit two innocents and sent them to the hospital. The police did not one thing to that car. Share the video for awareness!!!! #protest #blacklivesmatter."