Officials at the Commonwealth’s Attorney’s Office of Albemarle County in Charlottesville said on Monday morning that four warrants had been issued for Mr. Cantwell’s arrest. The office referred questions about the nature of the charges to the University of Virginia Police Department. A spokesman at the department did not respond to requests for comment on Friday, Saturday and Monday.
The Boston Globe reported on that the warrants were related to the “illegal use of gases, and injury by caustic agent or explosive.” In interviews on Friday and Saturday, Mr. Cantwell said that if he were to face such charges, he believed they are connected to an episode he said was photographed by a journalist. The image, he said, shows “that I’m pepper-spraying a guy straight in his face as he’s coming toward me.”
Mr. Cantwell rose to prominence days later when Vice News aired its report recapping what happened. The reporter, Elle Reeve, was embedded with white nationalists, and the documentary allowed viewers to see things from their perspectives. Mr. Cantwell was featured prominently in the report.
After the rally, he dumped at least four firearms and a knife onto a bed, the video shows. Several times throughout the Vice report, he made it clear that he and other members of the alt-right were capable of violence, saying during the rally that they would kill their opponents “if we have to.”