Richmond’s Robert E. Lee statue being inspected ahead of planned removal

Virginia

An inspection crew from the Virginia Department of General Services inspect the statue of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee on Monument Avenue Monday June. 8, 2020, in Richmond, Va. Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam has ordered the removal of the statue. (AP Photo/Steve Helber)

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — Crews are being dispatched to the Robert E. Lee monument in Richmond to inspect and analyze the statue before its planned removal, but state officials say the memorial will not be moved on Monday.

Virginia’s Department of General Services said it plans to remove the statue of the Confederate general as soon as possible.

But officials said it must be done safely given the memorial’s weight and height.

“This is an old and heavy piece. The massive statue weighs approximately 12 tons, stands 21 feet tall, and has been on a 40-foot pedestal for 130 years. Meticulous planning is required to remove an aging monument of this size and scale safely,” General services said in a release.

Gov. Ralph Northam ordered the monument’s removal last week in the wake of protests in Richmond and across the country against police brutality. City leaders have also committed to taking down another four Confederate memorials along Richmond’s prestigious Monument Avenue.

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