Northrop Grumman Investigates Worker For Alleged Charlottesville Rally Violence

July 6, 2018, 7:21 PM UTC
Northrop Grumman charlottesville worker
Northrop Grumman Corp. signage is displayed during the Special Operations Forces Industry Conference (SOFIC) in Tampa, Florida, U.S., on Tuesday, May 22, 2018. The conference offers the SOF community a place to interact with industry and to collaborate on the challenges, initiatives and way-ahead in delivering the most cutting-edge capabilities into the hands of SOF operators. Photographer: Luke Sharrett/Bloomberg via Getty Images
Luke Sharrett—Bloomberg via Getty Images

Eleven months after a counter protester was killed at a White Supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Va., and many more injured, defense contractor Northrop Grumman says it is now investigating an employee who reportedly attended the gathering.

Michael Miselis, an 29-year-old Northrup Grumman systems engineer with U.S. government security clearance, was identified by ProPublica and Frontline via photos, interviews, and videos, as participating in the rally. In a video, Miselis was reportedly seen pushing down an African-American counter protestor, before “pounding on him.”

Northrop Grumman was recently made aware of alleged employee actions that are counter to our values,” the company announced in a statement Thursday. “We are taking immediate action to look into the very serious issues raised by these reports.”

According to interviews with current and former Northup Grumman employees, Northrop Grumman appeared to have known of Miselis’ participation in Charlottesville, ProPublica and Frontline said. It’s unclear when the company was made aware of the association.

Miselis, also a Ph.D. candidate at UCLA’s aerospace and engineer program, was identified as a member of the Rise Above Movement, an anti-Muslim, anti-Semetic, and anti-immigrant group that made a big showing at the protests. UCLA told ProPublica and Frontline that Miselis is technically on leave.

“Northrop Grumman is absolutely committed to the highest levels of ethics and integrity in all that we do, and ensuring that our workplace reflects our values of diversity and inclusion,” the statement from the company continued. “We do not tolerate hatred or illegal conduct and we condemn racist activities in any shape or form.”

When approached during the reporting by ProPublica and Frontline, Miselis said that he “didn’t know anything” about the Charlottesville rally. He did not respond to further email queries.

That comes as companies have sought to distance themselves from the rally. After an Cole White, an employee of Top Dog was photographed attending the protests, the restaurant announced that White had resigned.

Northrop Grumman did not respond to requests for comment as to whether Miselis had been reprimanded, suspended, or fired.

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