Local News

Lexington removes Confederate monument overnight

Posted October 16, 2020 10:43 a.m. EDT

A Confederate monument in Lexington was removed late Friday night, police confirmed to WXII News.

The public was unable to view the removal as roads were blocked, according to residents downtown at the time.

The monument has been at the center of controversy in downtown. Black Lives Matter protesters had gathered at the courthouse, across from the statue, on-and-off for months protesting against the monument. Other demonstrators dressed in confederate clad remained downtown to protest its removal.

Back in June, WXII reported that two people were arrested for disorderly conduct during a peaceful protest against racism in Lexington. The station reports that the demonstrations have been largely peaceful. In August, the city filed a lawsuit to demand relocation of the Confederate monument, declaring it a "nuisance."

The Davidson County Superior Court dismissed the county's temporary restraining order filed against the city of Lexington that prevented the removal of the monument on Oct. 15, according to a statement from the Mayor of Lexington.

"As we aspire to become a city of choice, and perhaps most importantly a city of unity, we remain committed to creating an inclusive, safe and welcoming city," Mayor Newell Clark said.

The Davidson County Board of Commissioners released a statement on Wednesday that said the memorial in Lexington should remain in its current position as tribute to men who lost their lives in the way.

The board made the statement after the city and the Robert E. Lee Chapter of the United Daughters of the Confederacy agreed to relocate the statue.

Lexington city officials agreed to pay for the cost of removing and storing the memorial. WXII reports that the agreement was made "without the knowledge or consent of Davidson County."

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