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State Police Widows Sue Over Unite The Right Deaths

Allege Issues With Helicopter Maintenance

August 14, 2019 - 9:02 am

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (AP) — The widows of two Virginia troopers killed in a helicopter crash during a deadly white nationalist rally in Charlottesville are now suing the state and others over their husbands' deaths.

Amanda Bates and Karen Cullen filed separate wrongful death lawsuits Monday against Virginia, the Secretariat of Public Safety and Homeland Security and state police.

H. Jay Cullen and Berke M.M. Bates had been monitoring the "Unite the Right" rally on Aug. 12, 2017, when their helicopter crashed.

Federal investigators expect to issue their findings on the crash next year. A primary report suggests the aircraft's main rotor system or tail rotor likely malfunctioned and caused it to spin out of control. The lawsuits say the helicopter had a history of malfunctions, including the tail rotor issues.