The contracting firm that was hired to take down some Confederate monuments in New Orleans has backed out after facing death threats, as was revealed in the proceedings for a case seeking to halt the monuments’ removal.
Rebecca Dietz, a city attorney, said at a hearing Thursday that H&O Investments LLC of Baton Rouge sent a letter to the city backing out after its office received death threats, the owner’s wife was threatened over the phone, and it became apparent its contracts with other businesses were at risk, the Associated Press reported.
New Orleans City Council approval of a measure that would take down four Confederate monuments in the city prompted a local chapter of a neo-Confederate group, along with a few preservations groups, to file a complaint halting the removal. The city has agreed to not remove the statutes until after the initial round of proceedings
At Thursday’s hearing, U.S. District Judge Carl Barbier seemed skeptical of the challengers’ arguments as to why a preliminary injunction should be placed on the removal the statues, The Advocate reported.
“I went back and read your legal memorandum at least five times and I don’t even understand your argument,” Barbier said, according to The Advocate. “Usually I understand an argument even if I don’t agree with it.”
He said planned to issue a written decision in the near future, according to The Advocate.