Man called Antifa influencer by HPD Chief denies claim, retains lawyer

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HUNTSVILLE, Ala. – A Huntsville man is speaking out after Chief Mark McMurray showed his picture during Thursday’s after-action report, calling the man an Antifa sympathizer.

Benjamin Shapiro has now retained a lawyer and disputes everything Chief McMurray said about him.

Shapiro’s face appeared on a few slides during the three hour presentation. His eyes were blocked out in the slides but that didn’t stop people from noticing him and in turn blowing up his phone.

“He get’s online and helps others organize through conversations with young people,” said McMurray during the presentation.

“I’m a stay at home dad,” said Shapiro. “I watch the kids, take care of them. I do a lot of writing and charitable work. I run a small virtual theater.”

Benjamin Shapiro has called Huntsville home for 8 years. He said he’s a regular guy, but that changed a bit Thursday night.

“It made me lose a bit of faith in Huntsville after that,” said Shapiro. “And I love this city.”

Shapiro denied being an Antifa sympathizer. “I don’t even know how to pronounce it half the time. I was pronouncing it ANTEEFA and then my mom was like, that’s not how you pronounce it. I was like.. I know!”

The Huntsville Police Department said they have no history with Shapiro and he is not under investigation, yet he was called an Antifa influencer.

“I have 300 friends on Facebook and all my posts are private,” said Shapiro

When telling the council about social media intelligence, Chief McMurray said, “I guess you call it soft, soft intel. Might mean something, might not. But look what they are talking about.”

Shapiro admitted to lightly trolling an HPD social media post but thinks it was a far-cry to cast him as a member of Antifa.

“I’m just a guy,” said Shapiro. “I’m not even an important guy. I’m a guy they decided to pick on.”

Shapiro has retained a lawyer and has reached out to city council to make a case for himself.
He claims he’s never even been to a protest.

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