New Orleans removes Beauregard statue

The dismantling followed the city's recent removals of monuments to Confederate President Jefferson Davis and to a white supremacist militia.

Father and son Michael Kimball, 57, and Christopher Kimball, 31, both of Norco, were arrested and charged with criminal damage to historic buildings or landmarks by defacing with graffiti.

New Orleans removed the third of four Confederate statues slated for removal before dawn Wednesday morning, this one a depiction of Confederate general P.G.T. Beauregard.

The push by southern cities to remove monuments and Confederate flags from public display follows the 2015 shooting at a predominantly black church in SC. Instead they said, "To ensure the safety of residents, contractors, and the community at large during the monument removal process, City personnel took place in public safety and homeland security operations". On Tuesday, the area around City Park became a gathering space for monument defenders waving Confederate and American flags, and those who want to see the monuments removed.

The work to remove them has met with bitter opposition from supporters of the monuments.

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Marksbury says the group is now considering filing a contempt of court charge against the city and the mayor because he says they failed to do what they said they would to protect the statues.

Beauregard's monument recognizes a man with a long history in New Orleans and Louisiana whose post-Civil War career diverted from his commitment to the Lost Cause. A Civil District Court judge refused to issue an injunction to stop the impending removal, leading monument advocates to seek a temporary restraining order.

The monument is the third of four Confederate memorials the New Orleans City Council voted in 2015 to be removed from prominent locations around the city. The killer, Dylann Roof, was an avowed racist who brandished Confederate battle flags in photos, recharging the debate over whether Confederate emblems represent racism or an honorable heritage.

"Today we take another step in defining our City not by our past but by our bright future", said Mayor Mitch Landrieu in a statement sent out as crews arrived for the removal.

But for many in this majority black city, the monuments pay homage to a history of slavery and segregation. It commemorated the Battle of Liberty Place - a rebellion in 1874 by whites against a biracial Reconstruction-era government in New Orleans. Best known for commanding Confederate forces at Charleston, the start of the war and for his victories at Bull Run and Petersburg, Beauregard was born in nearby St. Bernard Parish and died in New Orleans.

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