A federal judge ruled Friday that Daily Stormer founder Andrew Anglin owes a former American University student government president more than $700,000 for directing his followers to threaten her with racist online messages.
In 2017, Taylor Dumpson, who is the first black woman to serve as student government president at AU, sued Anglin for allegedly initiating a racist “troll storm” against her that made her fear for her life and took a toll on her ability to pursue her education.
According to the Washington Post, the ruling in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia may mark the first time a court has ruled that racist online trolling activity can interfere with one’s equal access to a public accommodation.
“We think that this essentially opens up a new avenue to attack the dangerous activities of white supremacists in our country,” Kristen Clarke, president and executive director of the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law, which represented Dumpson, told WaPo. “I would expect that other litigators will be able to use the ruling in this case to seek justice on behalf of other victims of hate crimes.”
Last month, a federal judge in Montana decided that Anglin owes real estate agent Tanya Gersh more than $14 million after rallying other white supremacists on his site to inundate her and her family with a barrage of threats and vitriol.
In June, a judge in Ohio awarded $4.1 million to Muslim-American radio host Dean Obeidallah after Anglin posted stories falsely accusing him of spearheading a terrorist attack.
Anglin reportedly failed to show up to both the Montana and Ohio proceedings, despite a federal judge ruling in April that Anglin’s personal safety concerns for traveling to the U.S. were “factually unsupported.”