A group of 'White Lives Matter' protestors allegedly assaulted an interracial couple at a restaurant in a suburb of Nashville, Tennessee, police say. Shelbyville in Tennessee, just a hour south of Nashville, had been the site of a white supremacist rally earlier the same day.
The Shelbyville rally on Saturday 28 October had been a precursor to another planned in Murfreesboro later in the day but after meeting intense resistance, the second rally was abruptly cancelled by organisers.
According to Nashville Police Department, a 30-year-old white woman and her 37-year-old Afrcian-American partner were sitting in the Corner Pub in Brentwood on Saturday evening when a group of between 20 or 30 white men and women entered the restaurant.
Authorities said that according to the woman, the group sat behind the couple and asked her to "guess", when she said "white lives matter" an individual in the group said "that's right" and suggested she leave her partner and join their table. After an argument inside, the woman went outside to "deescalate the situation" where the confrontation continued, a police release said.
Police said that a man then allegedly struck the woman in the face with his fist and left her with a cut above her eye. The man is described as a white male in his 30s who was wearing a black jacket and black jeans at the time. Authorities said the victim refused medical treatment.
One of those in a video posted to social media was identified by other reports as Matthew Heimbach, a known white nationalist leader. Speaking to a Mic reporter, Heimbach claimed that the African-American man had "swung first" and that he was attempting to defuse the situation.
A woman who posted a video of the incident said in a Facebook post that she had gone to Brentwood to "escape the rally chaos" but recognised the group when they entered. The group "immediately started harassing a biracial couple there", she said.
"It broke out into a huge fight with them busting open the face of the white girl who was furious with them for harassing them." She wrote.