PORTSMOUTH, Va. (WAVY) — A circuit court judge has ruled that the city cannot claim ownership of the Confederate statue located downtown, making it more difficult to move, according to court documents. 

Judge Moore says the city cannot claim ownership of the monument at the intersection of Court Street and High Street, because no one else is trying to claim it.

In October 2016, the City of Portsmouth asked for a declaratory judgment to establish its ownership of Portsmouth’s Confederate monument. 

The Stonewall Camp filed an objection to the City’s complaint. 

Last year, Portsmouth Mayor John Rowe called for the memorial to be moved from Court Street to the Cedar Grove Cemetery. However, city council voted the ultimate decision was to be left to the voters.

The debate of the city’s monument, in the heart of downtown, was renewed in August after a counter-protester died at a white supremacist rally in Charlottesville.