The Loyal White Knights of the KKK disrobed
Exclusive: 18 month investigation inside the most dangerous Ku Klux Klan faction in America reveals armed Confederacy of Dunces
(This is the third article in a three part series on the internal culture of the Loyal White Knights, America’s most active and extremist Ku Klux Klan faction. Links to Part One and Part Two are at the end of this story. Please consider that investigative journalism is important, expensive, time consuming and requires resources to research and report. No media outlet or other institutions funded this 18 month investigation. I make my living as an investigative journalist. If readers are inclined and able, please consider supporting this and similar investigations. There is a PayPal donation button on the upper right of this page)
(c) No republication in whole or in part allowed without express written permission from the author
By Nate Thayer
April 7, 2018
The Ku Klux Klan likes to portray itself as the “invisible empire.” The willingness to join comes with a promise that everyone can do so anonymously, their faces hidden behind hoods and their identities an inviolable secret often kept from their families, employers, neighbors, political enemies, and authorities.
Earlier, Imperial Wizard of the Loyal White Knights of the Ku Klux Klan, Christopher Eugene Barker, refused a reporter’s request for an interview. “Continue your trash journalism while the L.W.K continues. You are just a blink of an eye I was taught to ignore.”
“Welcome to the Invisible Empire!” he snarled.
“We do not keep member lists and no one will know you are a member unless you tell them,” Imperial Wizard Barker tells potential recruits.
The Imperial Wizard’s assertions there is no list of members kept or risk that the true identities of members might be disclosed is undermined by the LWK’s own secret membership roster– including real names, photographs, addresses, and contact information–provided to this reporter by dissident members of the racist hate group. Its accuracy was confirmed by cross checking the information with digital footprints, other LWK confidential documents, and interviews with more than two dozen current and former members of the Loyal White Knights and others.
Further, disenchanted Klansmen provided a reporter screen grabs of hundreds of conversations, copies of emails, and surreptitiously recorded telephone conversations, in addition to unfiltered access to the Loyal White Knights’ password protected message boards, discussion groups, and live thrice-weekly nationwide telephone conference calls that require access codes.
Welcome to the Digital Age, Imperial Wizard Barker.
Together with interviews of other current and former Loyal White Knights, members of other KKK factions, law enforcement who track U.S. domestic terrorist groups, and others, an exclusive view from inside the disturbing world of the most extremist KKK faction in the United States has emerged unveiling the human faces behind the hoods.
“We got police officers in the Klan, we got lawyers, we got doctors, we got teachers – your next-door neighbor could be in the Klan, and you’d never know it,” said James Moore, the Imperial Kludd (or national Christian pastor) and Grand Dragon (or state leader) of Virginia for the LWK.
But none of those claims are true, either.
In addition, James Moore’s name is not James Moore—that is an alias for James Seay, a 26-year old unemployed man who lives on the flight path close to Richmond airport in nearby Sandston, Virginia.
Seay, whose interpretation of the bible includes that non-whites are “mud people” and Jews are “Spawns of Satan,” claims to be an ordained minister. But that is not true, either. He bought his pastor degree off the Internet and has never had any formal training.
Seay is a virulently anti-Semitic adherent of Nazi ideology and Christian Identity, a fringe white supremacist
interpretation of the bible which oppose interracial relationships, race mixing, homosexuality, abortion and multiculturalism. He identifies as a Phineas Priest, self proclaimed domestic terrorists named for a small group of white nationalists convicted of a spree of bank robberies used to finance targeted political murders and bombing campaigns against U.S. newspapers and abortion clinics who planned to blow up U.S. federal office buildings when they were arrested in the late 1990’s.
The current members roster of the Loyal White Knights of the KKK provide a portrait few would mistake for a Rotary club. A notably disproportionate percentage of current members have a violent criminal history–many with outstanding arrest warrants–which include charges for attempted murder, first-degree rape, assault and battery causing bodily injury, domestic violence, sexual assault on a minor, various weapons-related charges, malicious arson, communicating threats, and scores of alcohol and drug related arrests, an investigation into the backgrounds of members shows.
An analysis of all 257 members of and applicants to the North Carolina based Loyal White Knights as of March 2018, show there are no doctors, lawyers, teachers, or policemen, as Mr. Moore asserts, although a notably disproportionate number of members do suffer from alcohol, drug, and poor diet related health problems, have a remarkably frequent need to retain the services of lawyers after adversarial encounters with law enforcement, and failed to take advantage of the educational and employment opportunities provided by teachers available to those who complete high school.
A majority of current members are unemployed, don’t pay taxes, and survive on various government welfare schemes, particularly social security, food stamps and disability benefits, which they denounce as the hallmarks of the abuse by minorities and immigrants who burden white Americans.
And almost all members of the Loyal White Knights are armed, including those, such as Imperial Wizard Barker, who are convicted felons and barred by law from possessing firearms.
For 150 years, the Ku Klux Klan, with their identities hidden behind white hoods in public, organized through secret meetings on the private property of sympathetic racists.
But ever since the rise of the digital age in the 1990’s, the platform for communicating, organizing, and recruitment is now the computer, which has proved both a boon and a detriment to the Ku Klux Klan.
On the one hand, the Internet has allowed for a far longer reach to spread their political message to a much larger audience, from which the Loyal White Knights cherry pick recruits from the darker corners of social media, than could be hoped for by a few dozen people holding signs on courthouse steps in rural towns or giving speeches at a Saturday night cross burning while grilling hot dogs and burgers on an isolated farm.
These are who are the new generation of members of the Loyal White Knights.
On the other hand, the ubiquitous digital age has undermined their ability to employ effective operational security or protect their anonymity.
The world wide web has effectively slowed to a trickle the infamous gatherings of robed Klansmen at cross burnings.
In 2018, most Klansmen have never met each other in real life.
The iconic name and symbolism of the KKK has long been synonymous with vigilante racial violence in the United States. This irreversible legacy and reputation is what, disturbingly, attracts many of the younger members to the blackened name of the KKK, but reaches a point of diminishing returns which excludes them from ever again having a significant influence over public policy.
Interviews with several dozen current and former LWK members and their internal documents suggest that the Loyal White Knights is operated as much as a business run by a racist entrepreneur exploiting the historical cache of the legacy of the KKK for personal profit as it is a serious group of domestic terrorists.
But that does not mean that the rogue Klan group, who are widely shunned by older, more traditional Klansmen as an embarrassment who attract disreputable ruffians to their ranks, is not dangerous.
Isolated extremist cells left uncontrolled by a central organizational authority can become breeding grounds for unpredictable violence.
Imperial Wizard Barker does not devote much effort to reigning in his erstwhile subordinates, leaving individual members to commit mayhem free from oversight imposed by the group.
The LWK membership, an investigation shows, marries rabid racist and anti-Semitic intolerance with the unstable aggression of many of its members while promoting vigilante violence.
After the extreme white nationalist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia August 12, 2017 that descended into chaotic violence leaving one counter-protestor dead after she was run over by a car, Imperial Wizard Barker hailed the driver as a “hero” “that makes us proud.”
“Nothing makes us more proud in the Loyal White Knights of the KKK than when we see white patriots such as James Fields, Jr., age 20, taking his car and running over nine communist, anti-fascists killing one nigger lover named Heather Heyer,” Barker said on a voice recording on his LWK “hotline” number interested recruits are directed to call. “James Fields, Hail Victory! It is men like you that make the great white race strong and will be strong again. For more info on joining the Klan, leave your name and number and area code or go to our website…”
He concludes with “Always remember, if it ain’t white, it ain’t right. White Power!”
Voice recording of Loyal White Knights of the Ku Klux Klan Imperial Wizard Christopher Barker praising the driver of the car that ran over and killed a counter protestor in Charlottesville, Virginia August 12, 2017
Racist violence is more difficult to monitor and therefore prevent when it is carried out by “lone wolves” operating outside a broader organization. The Loyal White Knights not only don’t oppose acts of vigilantism, they encourage it, according to former members of the group.
“I remember at a 2015 Klonvocation (annual gathering) at Barker’s house. As we were preparing to all drive back to our home states, he told us ‘I want you to kill a nigger on your way home,'” recalled Richard Dillon, a former Loyal White Knights member from Indiana. “He was dead serious. I said ‘I can’t believe he just said that!’ He didn’t even know half the people in that room. He said ‘No one will find out and you won’t be a suspect because you aren’t from there.’ You do not forget those kind of words. I will remember them until the day I die.”
The Loyal White Knights of the Ku Klux Klan
An investigation has determined the true identities of all the mostly men and some women members of the most extremist Ku Klux Klan group in the United States as of March 2018.
According to Loyal White Knights records, there are 257 members (including people who have expressed an interest in membership but have not become “naturalized”–or initiated–members) of the most active KKK group in the country.
An overwhelming majority of current members joined over the internet or via the LWK telephone number, but most have never became active, even on the Klan factions password protected Internet discussion boards. An analysis of LWK internal records show that, since December 2016, less than 100 have participated in any activity on the LWK private web platforms. Of those that have, less than half–or about 25 to 40–are regularly active in Klan activities, including minor participation such as commenting on their private chat and Internet discussion boards or participating in their weekly scheduled telephone conference calls (known as Klan Klass). Even fewer have taken part in nationwide leafleting campaigns, participated in rarely held public demonstrations, or attended cross burnings held in secret on private property. Most have never met each other in person.
These numbers reflect a loose allegiance and fleeting enthusiasm for the group after new members are initially attracted over the Internet and pay a $20 membership application fee, LWK sources say.
According to internal Loyal White Knights membership documents and interviews with more than two dozen current and former members, the Klan faction has several real life gatherings annually, usually on private property, but the events have never exceeded 100 attendees in recent years. An estimated 50 people, coming from a number of states, attended their last event in November 2017 on the rental property of Imperial Wizard Barker in Yanceyville, North Carolina.
This upcoming weekend of April 6th through 8th, there is another “mandatory” gathering of LWK members that will be held on the private property of a member near Federalsburg, Maryland. New Members will be “naturalized” after speeches and cross burnings held on Saturday April 7th.
One current LWK member estimates that, as of March 2018 “they might have 25 to 40 non-Internet members–maybe. If I were to put a honest number of active members, I’d say 150 “max” total, including those just on the Internet. That equals 3 a state, but there are states with more, some with none.”
“The government-controlled media has took notice of how when the Loyal White Knights hit the street we come in numbers,” Imperial Wizard Barker said recently.
“If you are wanting action, the Loyal White Knights is for you,” said Barker in June 2015. “We do not hide behind computers.”
But Barker himself has not attended a single public event in six years–even the handful which his own Loyal White Knights have officially sponsored.
But that doesn’t mean he has not been active.
The number of Klan chapters jumped from 72 in 2014 to 190 in 2015 and then fell 32% to 130 in 2016, according to the Southern Poverty Law Center which tries to track U.S. hate groups.
Much of that fluctuation is accounted for by the revolving door of new Cyber Klans, or what well established old school Klansmen refer to as “pop up” or “mom and pop” Klans which operate almost solely as Internet websites and communicate via social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter.
Many Klan groups routinely have internal strife that results in breakaway factions taking members and forming new groups. This does not reflect a growth in national Klan membership, but rather a shift to newly created factions taking dissafected members from existing Klan factions.
It is impossible to accurately estimate the total membership numbers of the more than 100 groups who use the name “Ku Klux Klan” because some do operate entirely off the grid, but Klan members say only a handful have memberships that exceed 25 people.
Ever since the August 2017 white nationalist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia which turned deadly, Facebook and Twitter and You Tube have ratcheted up their monitoring of racial and other hate content and have suspended or terminated hundreds of thousands of right wing extremist accounts.
At the end of 2017, Facebook employed 7,500 censors, or “content reviewers”, who decide what posts that are flagged by its 2 billion users get removed as “hate speech.” Facebook currently deletes about 66,000 posts deemed hate speech weekly, but will double the size of its censors and security monitors to 20,000 in 2018, company spokesmen say.
A majority of Loyal White Knights members, as well as those from other Klan groups who use Facebook–which they often refer to as “Jewbook”– have had their Facebook and Twitter accounts repeatedly suspended or terminated. “I am in Facebook jail again,” wrote one LWK member to the members discussion board in February. “If you need to contact me I will be on here or you can call me.”
As a result many Ku Klux Klan and neo-Nazi adherents have opened up accounts on social media sites such as Russia’s biggest social network site, VK, and the Texas-based Gab.ai–the rough equivalents of Facebook and Twitter, respectfully–which are much more tolerant of extremist ideologues. The largest of numerous KKK pages on VK has over 10,000 followers. Gab.ai uses the motto “Free Speech For Everyone” and the hashtag #Sharefreely.”Niggers always mess everything up, even in death,” wrote Patrick to other members on the LWK members only live chat site. The new Grand Dragon of Texas was referring to the Martin Luther King holiday in January.
“I have some papers to give to the child support office and then to take to
the courthouse to get custody of my son and naturally they are closed due to nigger day. I am sick of nigger day nigger week, and nigger history month. This stuff needs to stop.
Until recently, Patrick was the Knight Hawk–or chief enforcer–for Texas but was promoted after the former Grand Dragon, William Lewey aka Billy Batts was arrested in January on outstanding warrants for ‘assault and battery causing bodily injury’ for beating up his then girlfriend and sentenced to four months in the Bexar County, Texas jail (see below for profile on Lewey/Batts).
Patrick attends most all LWK events where he can be seen dressed in the all black Klan Knight Hawk robes and carrying a medieval warrior’s shield staring down counter-protestors and securing the perimeter around Loyal White Knights ranking officers.
“As long as we have white traitors and drama clowns, how are we supposed to win a race war?” asked Will, an LWK member from Mississippi.
Of the nearly 100 separate white supremacist groups who use nameKu Klux Klan, those that have seen the largest expansion in membership are the ones who aggressively exploit the Internet as a tool for recruitment.
Using access controlled discussion groups as a virtual meeting space and available to members and vetted sympathizers only, Klan groups like the Loyal White Knights instruct members to wage frequent “Knight Rides” to anonymously distribute propaganda literature that display their website address and telephone ‘hotline’ number.
These leafletting drops invariably creates wide community angst and objection which sparks headline grabbing media attention. Loyal White Knights literature has been dropped at night in at least 26 states since the start of 2017, and in most of those states multiple times, according to LWK members taking credit for the flier drops and corroborated by local media and law enforcement reports.
The effect of this strategy is that tens of thousands of people are made aware of the Loyal White Knights with the efforts of what almost always is only one or two Klansmen distributing leaflets to a few hundred homes on lesser travelled roads on the outskirts of small towns across rural America. This in turn, Loyal White Knights members all agree, always results in a spike in people contacting the Klan faction interested in joining, which in turn results in more membership fees and dues and sale of other Klan related knickknacks that go directly into the personal coffers of Imperial Wizard Barker and his family.
When calling the 1-800 number displayed prominently on all leaflets, callers are sent to a recorded bigoted message and then instructed to leave a name and phone number and someone will get back in touch.
“The Loyal White Knights of the KKK would like to say ‘Hail Victory! to the young warrior in South Carolina, Dylan S. Roof, who decided to do what the bible told him,” Imperial Wizard Barker says in a voice message recording left on his LWK telephone answering machine used to attract new members. “An eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth, they have spilled our blood for too long. It is about time someone spilled theirs,” Barker says referring to the shooting nine black parishioners in their Columbia, South Carolina church in June 2015. “If we had 10,000 more men like him, America would not be in the shape it is now.”
Loyal White Knights of the KKK Imperial Wizard Christopher Eugene Barker praising convicted racist mass murderer Dylan Roof on a voice message recording on his Klan telephone “hotline
Ever since the age of the Internet, the political activism of KKK members mostly stops when the anonymity afforded sitting behind a computer is threatened, documents and interviews show.
The internet has largely replaced public rallies and private in person gatherings on private property, bringing for the more tech savvy Klan factions a conferrable expansion of membership while simultaneously increasingly polluting the already tainted waters of the pool of interested recruits.
Public demonstrations, cross burning ceremonies, and street rallies have decreased to a trickle in recent years, replaced by using the computer to spread KKK ideology and recruit new members.
Of the five public Ku Klux Klan rallies in total held in 2015, members of the Loyal White Knights were responsible for three. In 2016 the LWK sponsored two public events in Georgia and one aborted “Trump Victory Parade” in North Carolina. In July 2017 there was a single rally, ostensibly to defend confederate war memorials, held in Charlottesville, Virginia.
In February, during one password accessed members conference call linking LWK members by telephone for hour long weekly discussions known as “Klan Klass”, Christopher and Amanda Barker said no public demonstrations had been scheduled for 2018.
Klan chapters in the U.S. grew from 72 in 2014 to 190 in 2016, according to the Southern Poverty Law Center, by exploiting the rancorous debate over confederate flags and monuments. Rallies in favor of the battle flag were held in 26 states in 2016, often exploited by the Klan as a symbol for much broader white anger over race, immigration, and the disenfranchisement of the white rural poor and working class.
At the white nationalist rally that grabbed national headlines when it turned deadly in Charlottesville, Virginia in August, 2017, members of at least four Klan factions, including the Loyal White Knights, attended–but none of them identified themselves as KKK or wore traditional Klan regalia.
Of the handful of LWK public rallies held between 2015 and 2017, all were using the theme of saving confederate heritage–not the racism, anti-Semitism, and immigration issues which are the true core of their agenda that fuels their private conversations.
While in jail last month, Barker was recorded telling his wife on March 21 “I am trying to get out before people recognize who the fuck, what is going on, ‘cause if” they do, he said “you can guarantee that everyone will resign—everything.”
At one point, his wife tells him Klan subordinates are trying to get in touch with him. “Where did you tell them I’m at? If this shit slips out, I’m going to lose the organization I helped build up. You are fucking too because the money coming in to help pay your bills will be gone.”
The Loyal White Knights of the Ku Klux Klan and Trump
Almost all Klan members have legitimate, real life complaints. They are angry at being disenfranchised and ignored by the American political elite and were almost all full-throated supporters of U.S. President Donald Trump when he won the presidency.
“We won!!!! TRUMP WONNN,” wrote South Carolinian Amanda, the LWK Klabee–or treasurer–for that state on the night Trump was elected president.
“At 2:43 (AM) America woke up,” wrote Imperial Wizard Barker in the early morning hours of Wednesday November 9. “Trump won which shows their (sic) is still some hope for white AMERICA the south is united long live the KLAN.”
The Ku Klux Klan are trying to be a frightening voice for what they view as a threat to a diminishing caucasion majority. They believe they speak for a sector of rural white Americans with little access to jobs, health care, education, or opportunity from once all white and now forgotten communities. They blame their fear of growing disenfranchisement largely on religious and racial minorities, a sinister global Jewish conspiracy, an influx of immigrants, the shuttering of manufacturing and industrial jobs in communities long ravaged by epidemics of opiate, methamphetamine, and alcohol abuse.
“GOODBYE MEXICANS AND TOWEL HEADS! I AM SO LOOKING FORWARD TO WHEN TRUMP SENDS THEM BACK HOME WHERE THEY BELONG,” wrote Barker’s wife, Amanda, the night Trump won the presidential election. She is the number two ranking leader of the LWK, in capital letters for emphasis. “FOR THE BLACK PEOPLE (WHO) ARE MAD WANTING TO GO TO CANADA, DON’T LET THE DOOR HIT YOU ON THE WAY OUT. HA HA.”
“KIGY (Klansman I greet you) brothers and sisters. The niggers (sic) out the lying bitch and nigger lover,” wrote Phil Tanner, the LWK chief recruiter for the state of Michigan. “It should be a good for (sic) years. White Power! Have a blessed day everybody. Klasp.” (‘Klasp is a KKK acronym for “Klannish principles, a sacred principle”).
“KIGY brothers and s. Here is to a great four years. WHITE POWER!!!” offered Mike, who is a Canadian citizen from the western province of British Colombia
The KKK was clearly emboldened by Trumps victory. “The liberal media is scared because Clinton spent all this money, two billion dollars, and bought off the media Jews and Trump spent little,” Barker wrote to his members the next morning. “He just told the truth and what most Americans have said in private for years. Now maybe more whites will speak out and stand up.”
“KIGY, you know we got this so please be careful, family. Violence will strike,” wrote Billy Batts, the LWK Grand Dragon for Texas, on the morning Trump was elected president. Batts’s real name is William Lewes and at the time of his comment was on the lam from arrest warrants for “assault and battery causing bodily injury” in Texas and “assault and Battery against an elderly/disabled person over age 65” in Massachusetts. “Watch your back and front. I will be by your side in this war. I want to die protecting us like family in war in the past.”
“It is a great day for white people and the second amendment,” wrote Jeff from North Carolina in response to Trump’s election victory.
The following week, Barker had his views reinforced that Trump was assisting the Klan into a new ascendancy by media reports showing popular interest in the KKK had skyrocketed since Trump was elected.
Google Trends data shows that on November 9 — the day after Trump won the election — interest in the KKK skyrocketed, tripling and overtaking a perennial favorite for search terms used for Internet inquiries–the Kardashians–which all things of popular interest in American pop culture are compared. Searches for the Ku Klux Klan overtook the Kardashians for the first time ever.
The ‘Trump Victory Parade’ Fiasco
Imperial Wizard of the Loyal White Knights of the Ku Klux Klan Christopher Eugene Barker, reinvigorated and fueled by Trump’s victory, immediately announced that his North Carolina headquartered white supremacist group would hold a “Donald Trump Victory Parade” Saturday December 3 in Caswell County,
More than 100 Klansmen and their families arrived from across the country for the event which had attracted prolonged national media attention.
But in the pre-dawn hours of the morning of December 3, Klansman Richard Dillon, 48, of Hammond, Indiana and a small group of five LWK members were gathered drinking at Barker’s home around 3 o’clock Saturday morning when an argument erupted and Dillon suffered “multiple stab wounds to the interior upper chest.”
“Barker and Hagen wanted me dead. Their intent was to kill me,” said Richard Dillon in an interview while recovering from his injuries.
“While Hagen and Barker were getting increasingly drunk, they were becoming more and more antagonistic towards me,” said Dillon. “Chris Barker was antagonizing the argument the whole time, encouraging Hagen to fight me. I knew it was time to leave, but I knew I wouldn’t get out the door.”
Dillon said he was repeatedly stabbed by Hagen in Barker’s dining room while Barker punched him, held him down, and blocked the exit door to stop Dillon who was trying to escape. “Barker was encouraging Hagen to kill me. They were both drunk. The dining room floor was covered in my blood.”
Chris Barker and , William Ernest Hagen, were both arrested later that day. Barker was charged with “Felony Aiding and Abetting Assault with a Deadly Weapon with Intent to Kill Inflicting Serious Injury.”
William “Billy” Hagen, 52, who uses the alias Billy Quigg and was the California Grand Dragon and “King Kleagle”–or chief west coast recruiter for the LWK. Hagen, was charged with “Felony Assault with a Deadly Weapon with Intent to Kill Inflicting Serious Injury.”
Hagen was held on $350,000 bond and Barker on $200,000 bond.
When he was arrested, Hagen was already awaiting trial on similar charges in California. He had been released on a $500,000 secured bond there after he is alleged to have stabbed a Mexican American in a Denny’s restaurant parking lot in 2015 in what was investigated as a hate crime at the time. He was released in December in North Carolina after posting an additional $350,000 bond in that state. In addition to the North Carolina and California charges of which he is awaiting trial in both states, Hagen had been arrested at least two other times previously on charges of stabbing people in California.
The stabbing caused widespread disgust among other LWK leaders and members sparking a mutiny that saw nearly all their leadership defect in the following weeks, according to former members and a cache of internal documents detailing the turmoil.
More than 150, or 90% of the active membership, including the entire national governing body and every state chapter head in the U.S. resigned, with the exception of the embattled Imperial Wizard–or national leader– and a single top lieutenant.
Chitchatting with the Loyal White Knights of the Ku Klux Klan
The Loyal White Knights members-only, password protected internet chatroom is where Klansmen and Klanswomen remove their masks and talk about their problems, discuss the news of the day, and expound upon their racist, anti-Semitic, and otherwise hateful worldview fueled by reading conspiracy theories culled from the darkest corners of “fake news” sites on the Internet.
Commenting on an 88-year old German woman allegedly arrested for her Nazi sympathies, Nick, a Loyal White Knights member from Charlottesville, Virginia wrote “What they don’t talk about is most concentration camps had movie theaters, swimming pools, and all kinds of stuff. Auswitz (sic) even had a soccer team. But they don’t ever talk about that.”
“KIGY (KKK acronym for Klansman, I greet you), a 91-year old woman here in Oklahoma City who lives at an assisted living house had her credit card stolen,” said Ron, the Imperial Klaliff–or vice president–of the LWK state chapter in Oklahoma. “It turns out it was an employee of the assisted living house. Shows you you can give a nigger a job but you can’t stop them from stealing. KLASP (KKK acronym for Klannish Loyalty, A Sacred Principle).”
“Someone mailed 5000 racist fliers to people here in Pennsylvania,” wrote Justin from Pittsburg in October, who is the Knight Hawk–or chief enforcer for the Pennsylvania chapter of the LWK.
“THAT IS FREAKING AWESOME!” replied Billy Batts aka William Lewey, the Grand Dragon–or state leader for Texas.
“KIGY brothers and sisters with what’s going on in NY. They are holding a few meetings this Sunday October 15th 130-230 at our local library then another one on main street from 230-330, wrote Joleen Coty of Gloversville, New York,” said Joleen Cody of Gloversville, New York.
She and a small group of young small town high school buddies have waged a campaign of terror in upstate New York for more than a year in a series of small communities in Fulton County left frazzled by a Klan campaign distributing hate literature anonymously. “They are trying to push us out, but we are not going no where. Anyone want to join us let us know.” (see below profile of New York chapter of the Loyal White Knights)
“KIGY, Trying to push you guys out for using your constitutional rights,” responded Donnie of Maryland.
“Sounds like a civil law suit. Contact a civil rights attorney. Klasp Kabark Lgit.”
Kabark is a Klan acronym for ‘Konstantly Applied By All Regular Klansmen.’ It used mainly as a sign off in on-line messages by Klan group members.”
“Just hit the news. A guy who witnessed the (Las Vegas mass) shooting just went missing.He was supposed to be on this TV show to explain what he had seen,” commented Imperial Wizard Barker in the LWK live chatroom.
“So that should tell you something. ZOG does not want their story changing on TV.” ZOG (Zionist Occupied Government) is a term used by far right wing conspiracy theorists to refer to the U.S. Government.”The LWK Grand Dragon for Virginia, James Moore, added,”A woman who was a witness also was found dead and
Facebook erased it.”
“With all the bad news we hear about the injustices against our people, just remember what General Stonewall Jackson said after the destruction of Fredericksburg, Virginia in the summer of 1862,” said long time Klansman Calvin Neighbors of Gore, Virginia during a telephone ‘Klan Klass’ conference call on February 8 this year. “His army withdrew back across the Rappahannock river and they saw the destruction of the town and someone asked General Jackson, ‘What should we do, General?’ And he said ‘Kill them. Kill them all!’ Now, when the time comes, remember the injustices against our people and remember those words. KLASP! concluded Neighbors. ‘KLASP’ is a KKK acronyms standing for “Klannish Loyalty A Sacred Principle.”
“The worst part of being black or Jewish is you have to sit in the back of the oven,” wrote LWK member Eddie in a discussion on their chat site.
“KIGY brother, that was a good one,” replied Clark, the Grand Dragon for the State of New Jersey.
“KIGY. I’ve been doing Knight Rides myself. If I get some help from Klansmen in VA, Ohio, Maryland, I would come to these states and help you. Klasp,” said Eddie from Ohio.
Welcome to the family Nick and Nathan,” Eddie, from West Virginia and now Ohio, added referring to two young men who are new members from Indiana. “White Power! Klasp.”
“Bible Klass in 30 min,” interjected James Moore of Virginia. “Same number code as Thursday Klass.”
“Our own former president, that nigger who was in the White House, allowed these terrorists to come into the country,” said Brian, the Exalted Cyclops–or local leader– from Ridegely, West Virginia. “Now they are here in force in Detroit, Chicago and so forth. When you are out at your local supermarket, keep an eye out because you never know when they will start shooting people.”
“A lot of people don’t know where the first nigger came from,” he continued, explaining his interpretation of biblical scripture. “Cain, the first born son of Adam and Eve was a nigger. He killed his brother, Abel. Cain was the first murderer on earth and niggers have been doing it ever since,” he said.
“Actually Cain was a Jew,” interjected James Seay aka James Moore of Virginia, the Klan’s official Christian Pastor. “It takes a woman seven years to cleanse herself after birth. The white race was brought down to this earth 7522 years ago by Yahweh. The Black race are the watchers of Satan.”
“I know as Klan we have major issues with Jews and Niggers, but they aren’t our only concern, our only threat. They are trying to outlaw our fliers, but you can’t talk about ‘Jose’ coming across the border or call Muslims terrorists, but most of all you can’t say you are proud to be white,” commented Brian.
Expelled from the Loyal White Knights of the KKK
The Loyal White Knights have a remarkable revolving door of membership due to acrimonious infighting which has resulted in several hundred members resigning or expelled after disputes with the capricious, autocratic Imperial Wizard Barker.
Nobody is more aware of the percentage of dysfunctional, troubled people who are attracted to the Loyal White Knights than the LWK themselves.
The Klan faction maintains a list of over 100 former members who they have “banished”–the klan formal word for expulsion– for allegedly violating the group’s internal rules of conduct.
“Barker definitely attracts the bottom of the barrel, the curb trash bottom dwellers,” said former LWK Klansman Richard Dillon of Indiana. Dillon resigned from the LWK in December 2016 after Mr. Barker and his California Grand Dragon, William Ernest Hagen, stabbed Dillon “three times in the upper chest penetrating the interior,” according to hospital records. Despite being arrested and charged with attempted murder and now awaiting trial, Barker subsequently ‘banished’ Dillon accusing him of stabbing the two defendants. There is no evidence that either Barker or Hagen were stabbed, according to North Carolina law enforcement. “These people are the most susceptible to committing stupid acts of violence and terror to neighborhoods,” added Dillon referring to the members of the Loyal White Knights. “Believe me, brother, I know. I was one of them.”
“To all members of the Loyal White Knights of the Ku klux Klan: Banished members and those D.L.K (Disloyal Klansmen) are not to be spoken with. They are aliens to the Invisible Empire. And members who do talk with these people will be banished,” wrote Barker of his self-created list of expelled Klansmen. “These wretched souls are never to enter the sacred portals of the Invisible Empire again. May God punish them for their evil ways. And may they never touch something as pure as a Klansman’s robe again.”
More than 100 former loyalists stand accused of a potpourri of unconfirmed transgressions from illicit drug use, fraternizing with other races, various sexual shenanigans, “causing discord” within the LWK, a myriad of criminal activities, and being government informants.
Many of these allegations are known to be false or exaggerated and a spiteful byproduct of caustic disputes initiated by Mr. Barker, according to scores of former members of the LWK or Klansmen from rival factions.
But they do offer a portrait of the pool of personalities disproportionately attracted to the extremist group.
“He knows nothing about Klankraft and is an idiot who lets drug addict Michael Bryant run all over him,” Barker writes of another Imperial Wizard from a rival KKK faction.
Barker accuses another Imperial Wizard of “being bisexual and owns a gay bar” and “trying to come on to another Klansman.”
Another former LWK member is accused of being “a drug addict who likes to snort pills up his nose. Stays drunk and high most of the time. He did a public march with us and instead of going back with us to the cross lighting he went to the TV studios naming people on air. Believe he worked with the government naming people on live TV.”
Barker accuses another man and wife of being “dope addicts who try and screw people out of their money for their addiction.”
Another former member, a recently honorably discharged, two tour veteran of the U.S. Navy, resigned after getting fed up with the seemingly constant drama and discord in the Klan faction. He was post facto publicly “banished” by Barker for being “a coward.” Barker said: “He said his race was not important to him, being in front of the JewTube was. Was worried his work might find out he was a member. We are called the Invisible Empire. His work would never know unless he told on himself. COWARD.”
Barker banished another member from Kentucky for “being on meth” and “stealing from the local fire department. Selling stolen goods to scrap metal yards for dope money. Also says he was stealing brass plaques off graves.”
A Georgia member was banished for “sending naked pictures of himself to female members.”
A Virginia member was banished for being a “RACE TRAITOR sleeping with a Mexican girl. Claimed he could not tell she was a beaner.”
Another rival Imperial Wizard and his wife who were “known throughout the movement as pill junkies…loves crack and cocaine” were banished for “stealing Klan robes”
Barker banished a Colorado klanswoman saying “The lady was crazy and would call me and others at 3:00 in the morning always thinking someone was out to kill her. Called so much I wish at the end that they had.”
Barker banished a Texas couple “for trying to hide the fact she had a mixed child. Brad was later caught by the media while doing a live interview while looking at Asian porn.”
Virginian Justin was banished for being a “RACE TRAITOR (who) slept with a JEW WHORE (emphasis from original).
A Texas couple were banished because “Kevin is a registered sex offender.”
A Tennessee man was banished for being “caught making and selling meth.”
A New Mexico member was banished for “sexual abuse of a minor. Plus kidnapped the girl from her house in Georgia.”
An Ohio man, who was present when Barker stabbed another Klansman in Barkers dining room but then refused Barker’s request to lie under oath in court about what transpired, was banished. “He is a snake in the grass who would not help brothers in need.”
Barker then banished the stabbing victim, Richard Dillon of Indiana, for “attacking another Klansman on December 3rd 2016 were (sic) he stabbed Billy Hagen from California then lied to police to get Billy and Imperial Wizard locked up until bond was posted.”
Chris Barker and the California Grand Dragon, William Hagen, were arrested and charged with attempted murder for stabbing Richard Dillon of Indiana “three times in the upper interior chest penetrating the rib cage,” according to hospital records. Both Barker and Hagen are awaiting trial in North Carolina for “assault with a deadly weapon with intent to kill.”
More than 20 other Klansmen, who resigned believing the evidence against the Imperial Wizard was compelling, were later publicly named and banished by Mr. Barker.
Barker banished two former top officials of the LWK who had resigned in protest, for “causing discord among Klansmen and stealing books from the LWK. James and Theresa tried to call all members and tell them not to show up for Rally (and) that the LWK was shut down.”
The Grand Dragons of Alabama and Mississippi also resigned in protest of the stabbing. Later Barker banished them, too, for “causing discord among Klansmen. This guy was put in by the government him and Josh. Our members started getting stuff from the SPLC in the mail which is a group that tries to destroy the Klan.”
An Illinois couple resigned in protest of the stabbing of Mr. Dillon and were later banished, he accused of “abusing his pain medication (and) could hardly talk to members he stayed so stoned. Plus causing discord among members and talking to non-whites.”
The list contains the real full names of more than one hundred former members of the Loyal White Knights, many of them who actually resigned from the Loyal White Knights over disagreements with the Barker’s who, in an act of vengeance, were retroactively accused by Barker of a plethora of illegal activity or violations of Klan codes of conduct.
The Barker’s have a long history of making high volume, false personal attacks against their detractors.
The former Grand Dragon for a large southern state resigned in 2015 after becoming disillusioned with the LWK and sent the Barker’s this letter of resignation:
Out of spite and motivated by vengeance, the Barker’s then published the real name and a photograph of the former Klansman with his child and accused him of being an undercover agent for the FBI. Such rumors, if believed, can put a Klansman’s safety in jeopardy. In addition they threatened to mete out the same punishment to any LWK members who had any further contact with the man, including speaking with him or not deleting him as a Facebook “friend”:
The former Klan leader responded to the Barkers in an email:
Mr. Barker has himself been banished from at least three other Klan factions. After being expelled from the Virginia based Rebel Brigades of the Ku Klux Klan for desecrating a house of worship–allegedly spray painting a swastika on the front door of a synagogue in Danville, Virginia in 2011–Barker formed his own, and current KKK group, the Loyal White Knights.
In the wake of the December 2016 stabbing of another Klansman in Barker’s dining room, a rare unified “Proclamation” was signed by the highest ranking officers from 16 other, separate Ku Klux Klan groups “denouncing” Barker and declaring both he and his LWK faction “banished forever” from the Ku Klux Klan. The proclamation was weeks in the making after a secretive body of Klan elders representing groups from across the country were quietly approached and agreed to issue the equivalent of a White Nationalist “Fatwah” February 24, 2017, according to the document.
“In this Stormy Hour, Doleful Day, Weeping Week, Bloody Month…to all Emperors, Imperial Wizards, Genii, King Kleagles, Kleagles, Grand Dragons, Hydras, Great Titans, Furies, Exalted Cyclops, Terrors, to any and all to all holding whatever Degree Status they may claim within the bounds of the Invisible Empire, and to any and all members of, supporters, and advocates for, the many INDEPENDENT and DIFFERENT organizations using the name ‘Ku Klux Klan’….Regarding the Attested, Affirmed, Authentic, and Established Rebuke of, the denunciation, Disavowal, and Dissapproval of, and the refusal to recognize as legitimate in ANY way, shape, form, or fashion, TRUE Klanspeople with ANY rank, grade, station, or status within all of the recognized, Traditional ‘Klandom’, consisting, as it does the WHOLE WORLDWIDE Invisible Empire, Christopher Eugene Barker, 37-years
old and self proclaimed Imperial Wizard of the Invisible Empire, Loyal White Knights, Knights of the Ku Klux Klan of 2634 U.S. Highway 158 East, Yanceyville, Caswell County, North Carolina….” The document went on to declare Barker “rebuked” as an “attempted murderer, a known habitual alcoholic, a convicted felon, an alleged forgerer (sic), an accused arsonist, a convicted thief, and an abuser of women,” among other allegations.
North Carolina law enforcement documents and other LWK members corroborate the allegations. A copy of the equivalent of the KKK Fatwa was obtained by this reporter and sent by registered mail to Barker’s North Carolina home. It also states “we have reason to believe” that Barker “has been working as an
undercover informant for the FBI Joint Terrorism Task Force.After Mr. Barker received the denunciation, he lashed out at his detractors in a document he emailed to supporters. “James and his wife Theresa Taylor are nothing more but Title Chasers,” wrote Barker about a KKK elder active in the Klan for more than 50 years.
Taylor was the #2 ranking officer in the LWK until he resigned in protest after the December stabbing incident. His wife was the number two ranking woman in the LWK. Barker accused relatives of the Taylors of being “married to an Arab” and having “lived with blacks for over a year.”Barker directed ad hominem attacks on another long time LWK senior officer, accusing him of abusing his prescription pain medication and “slurred speech and his falling asleep on the phone.” The Illinois man was in charge of LWK activities in 11 midwestern states until he, too, resigned
“I just wanted to give a shout out and a pat on the back to all the members who are still with us. Some people have heard second-hand info (some from the Jewish media), and without getting their facts straight, decided to punk out, and quit the LWK instead of waiting to hear what happened from someone who was actually there,” wrote Barker in January 2017 to his remaining members.
“To me, when you take an oath before Yahweh [A reference to God used by some white supremacists], then break that oath for something like the recent event, that is no different from a soldier who abandons their post. Better we find out now than on the front lines later!!! When you shake an apple tree, the rotten apples (tourists or wannabes) fall away, but those that remain are the ones that can be relied upon to have their Brother’s back. Those that remain are the real revolutionaries, and may Yahweh bless you all for that!!!”
Barker has a criminal record of more than forty arrests over a span of 20 years up until March 20, 2018 when he was arrested for “assault on a female” –his wife, Amanda–and “resisting an officer.” After a week in jail, Mr. Barker plead guilty and was sentence to 12 months of supervised probation.
It is at least the ninth time Mr. Barker has been arrested for assaulting his wife, according to North Carolina and Florida court records. He has also been arrested for “communicating threats” threatening to “blow the head off” another North Carolina man; “malicious arson” for burning down the home of a neighbor he thought was sleeping with his wife; assault and battery causing bodily injury; attempting to sell a stolen firearm; attempting to trade a shotgun “for a fifth of liquor”; possession of a firearm by a convicted felon; larceny; burglary; and more than twenty alcohol related driving charges, among other arrests and convictions.
On March 21st, 2018, while in jail in Caswell County, North Carolina, he defied a judge’s “no contact” order with his wife and called her up at least four times from the inmate phone. In the audio conversations recorded by the county sheriff’s office, Barker told his wife. “I’m sorry about all this stupid shit. The drugs, smoking pot here and there, it’s just flippin’ my mind out, a little bit of everything.”
“Maybe we need to see a shrink,” he added.
“He is a drunk, he steals from his members, he is a free loader, and he has nothing to show to his members as far as paperwork,” said former Loyal White Knights Grand Dragon for South Carolina Charley Murphy before he died last December 30. “Barker being an informant for the feds is just one of his problems. A so-called Klansman preaching to his members about drinking alcohol who is an alcoholic? His petty games and using people for money is the reason he loses whole states worth of members.”
Leafletting “Knight Rides”
“Doin nigger coon day Knight Ride tonight so I won’t be in Klass,” wrote Eddie Ruttisill from West Virginia in January, referring to distributing racist literature excoriating Martin Luther King, Jr. over the holiday weekend that commemorates the civil rights icon.
Throughout the year the Loyal White Knights of the KKK launch coordinated nationwide recruitment campaigns distributing bigoted literature on little travelled rural roads at night or in quiet neighborhoods where families are sleeping.
The Loyal White Knights are by far the most active group distributing leaflets.
According to the ADL, they are responsible for 128 out of 274 flier drops nationwide–or nearly half of all the Klan leafletting incidents the ADL has recorded since January 2014.
Over the course of 2015, the ADL counted 86 separate incidents in which KKK materials were left on doorsteps or driveways.The Anti Defamation League documented 74 leaflet drops in 2016, 43 of which were by the LWK. The LWK were responsible for 34 of the 71 flyer incidents reported in 2017 in 13 states, according to the ADL.
In separate research, the SPLC found that Klan groups had covertly distributed white supremacist fliers 117 times in 26 states in 2016. The significant majority of those were the work of the Loyal White Knights, the SPLC said.
But LWK documents and internal discussions on their digital platforms record many more.
At least 300 separate flier drops were made by the LWK Klan faction between the beginning of 2016 through March of 2018, according to documents, information obtained from current and former Klan members, and a rigorous cross checking of the information with small media outlets and law enforcement agencies in communities targeted nationwide.
These figures are more than double those compiled by the ADL or the SPLC, both of which rely largely on the inexact science of perusing media reports on the Internet, which would explain the wide disparity between the two civil rights organizations accounting of leafleting incidents.
“The distribution of racist, anti-Semitic, homophobic and Islamophobic fliers remains the most consistent Klan activity,” An ADL report said.
Many members have defected from the group over the last sixteen months, many after their leader Barker was arrested on December 3, 2016 on attempted murder charges for stabbing another Klansman in Barker’s dining room during a late night drunken confrontation hours before a scheduled public “Trump Victory Parade” which brought LWK members to North Carolina from around the country.
Ironically, the publicity from the December 2016 high profile stabbing, which contributed to nearly 90% of the active members of the Loyal White Knights resigning, also attracted an equal number of new members joining the Klan faction over the Internet, many with disturbing personal résumés.
As of March 2018, less than 20 of the 257 members or applicants for membership were with the LWK prior to December 2016, according to LWK’s own records.Spreading White Power Propaganda: 2018
In commemoration of Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday and Valentine’s Day 2018, members of this most extremist KKK group in America waged “Night Rides” in Florida, New York, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Virginia, Minnesota, Texas and elsewhere, throwing thousands of leaflets and and some DVD’s in Ziploc baggies onto lawns across America, predictably rattling normally otherwise quiet and harmonious communities.
Under community pressure, local law enforcement and the FBI have launched scores of investigations trying to determine the identity of the culprits, angry citizen groups have held public meetings expressing outrage, and churches have held vigils.
But the coordinated distribution of the racist, anti-Semitic, and homophobic fliers are usually carefully worded to avoid threatening specific individuals. Members are instructed where they may and may not leave them to ensure constitutional free speech rights protect them, and ensure they not trespass on private property or violate petty local littering or nuisance ordinances that might give authorities a pretext to arrest or file criminal charges.
Communicating from behind anonymous computer keyboards on LWK member-only web platforms and on weekly telephone conference calls hosted out of Barker’s rural North Carolina home, the Klan group provides a selection of about 30 mostly racist, anti-Semitic, homophobic, and anti-immigration leaflets designed to be downloaded by computer at home, printed, and distributed.
While residents express fear that their communities have been infiltrated by organized hooded groups of violent racists, an investigation has shown that a vast majority of the leaflet distribution is the work of less than two dozen members of the Loyal White Knights.
The disproportionate public reaction stands in stark contrast to the small number of Loyal White Knights who participate in the late night terror campaigns designed to incite community turmoil.
Their intention is not to recruit those that receive the leaflets—often dropped intentionally in black communities—but rather to stir up community angst and spark maximum media attention, numerous former LWK members say. This then results in calls to the LWK hotline or people contacting their website with requests to join, which then results in thousands of dollars in revenue that goes directly to Chris Barker and his wife, Amanda.
One case study of a Klan leaflet drop
One recent late night leafleting to about 25 homes on a quiet street in Port Orange, Florida drew wide attention from the media, the community, elected officials, and law enforcement.
The fliers read “Stop Aids. Support gay bashing” and “support the white revolution” and prominently included the Loyal White Knights website and “hotline” number which rings in Christopher Barker’s rented home in rural Caswell County, North Carolina.
Cait Masci and Victor Ezeir found the baggies containing Smarties candy and recruitment fliers on Sunday morning October 9th, 2017. It was the third community in the area to have been targeted in a month and residents and officials were concerned that the Klan had a large presence in the area. With five children between the ages of 6 and 11, Masci and Ezeir wondered if the KKK was targeting children.
“It was awful and then there was candy and we have kids. Of course they are going to want to open it and want to see what was inside.”
Another resident, Jane Sciortino, told the local Fox TV news, “On God’s day to see this hatred, it just really disturbed me this morning. Stay out of my neighborhood; stay out of the city of Port Orange; stay out of here.”
“I was stunned, appalled and shocked. I think that we all need to stand up and condemn it,” a candidate for U.S. congress and former ambassador to the United Nations under President Bill Clinton, Nancy Soderberg, told local media.
That month, LWK fliers were also distributed in the nearby communities of New Smyrna Beach, Ormond Beach and Daytona Beach.
“It’s clearly a coordinated campaign,” said Solderberg.
“We strongly condemn this,” said State Rep. Patrick Henry, who met with other legislators to discuss the matter. “We will do everything that we can to bring attention to what they are doing. We don’t appreciate them targeting our citizens.’’
“Long before the current popularity of the all-right and the rise of the neo-Nazis competing for the top spot in the White supremacist’s world, we seem to have forgotten the old-school racists in the Ku Klux Klan,” said the Rev. L. Ronald Durham, president of the Volusia County Black Democratic Caucus caucus, who called for a town hall meeting.
“The City of Port Orange and the Port Orange Police Department denounce hate groups, hate crimes and any activity that advances their rhetoric,’’ Police Chief Thomas Grimaldi said. “We urge our citizens to report every incident of hate crimes and hate messaging so that together we can provide a safe place for all families to live and prosper.’’
“The NAACP is concerned about KKK activity in the county. When this hate group and others are comfortable doing something and not fearing for repercussions as a result of it, it’s a problem,’’ said local NAACP president Cynthia Slater.
The response to the Klan recruiting effort gave the the Loyal White Knights an exponentially greater audience through the high profile condemnation of public officials and the media coverage that followed.
But conversations in LWK chatrooms and messages left by members on their internal message boards show a single man, Matt from Daytona Beach, Florida took credit for the leafleting in Port Orange. In fact, the Daytona Beach Klansman, operating alone, was responsible for all four leafleting efforts, according to his own comments to other members on their digital platforms. “KIGY. I made the news again,” Matt reported to his fellow Klansmen. “This is mine,” he said, attaching a link to a Fox news report that was the top story on the broadcast that day.
“I sent out an order to do a recruitment drive to let the neighborhoods know that the Klan is in their community,” Chris Barker told the Daytona Beach News Journal. “If people like the message then they can join with us. We don’t target one certain house. That would be racist in itself. I mean you can’t tell if a house, like, a black lives there or a fag lives in the other house.”
A neighbor, Carolyn Ellis, was frustrated by the news coverage the flier drop received. “There are 50,000 people in Port Orange. One stupid person leaves a Smarties in my driveway. … I crumbled it up and threw it away.”
The flier drop in Port Orange has been similarly replicated in scores of communities across the country, invariably ratcheting up community angst and drawing attention from local political officials, churches, and civic leaders.
Conversations from the LWK telephone conference calls and private chat rooms suggest that members feel a sense of empowerment they have rarely felt otherwise in life from creating media attention and causing public turmoil that invariably results from the distribution of bigoted fliers, which they refer to as “Knight Rides”, a phrase long associated with vigilante visits by hooded robed Klansmen and lynchings of blacks over the last 150 years.
The knowledge that something they did is worthy of media attention–that someone is paying attention to them–also is intoxicating, according to former LWK members.
The conversations among members on their internal live chat room site make clear that the primary objective is to attract media attention.
The more that the group is in the public spotlight, regardless of how loud and negative the majority reaction always is, the attention invariably produces a few new members.
A large part of the reputation, perceived size, and geographical reach of the LWK is smoke and mirrors, documents and interviews with former members suggest.
“Christ said you will be hated. My concern is that people will try and hurt my family members” if his identity was made public, Casey Umland told a reporter after he was identified as the man behind the clandestine fliers posted all over Port St Lucie, Florida in January and February 2018
As is the case with Mr. Umland, most members of the LWK in 2018 have never met in real life and communicate using not very sophisticated false identities across social media platforms from behind computer keyboards, KKK documents and interviews show.
Hiding behind computer screens, which offer the perceived protection of anonymity, the hubris and false courage of LWK members is amplified.
The Klansmen eagerly scan the Internet to see whether their flier drops have been reported by media. If it has not, they often send messages, posing as distraught recipients, to local television and newspapers to jumpstart news stories.
“Sometimes, after I did a flyer drop, I would call the local media and say I was an outraged citizen who was leafleted. This always resulted in TV coverage,” said one former LWK member from a southern state. “And that always results in calls to the hotline by people wanting to join.”
Referring to the leaflet distribution, Paul Peck of Illinois, who headed the LWK operations for 13 mid-western states until he resigned in December 2016 over what he said was disgust at the personal conduct of Barker, said: “Me and the wife did a ‘Night Ride’ once and it hit the front page of three newspapers in three towns. The best thing these people can do is just ignore it—don’t call the cops, no press, throw them in the garbage. The Loyal White Knights are scum. Quote me on that.”
Loyal White Knights members boast about their nocturnal hate literature campaigns
Outside of Fayetteville, North Carolina last October, racist fliers were found on vehicle windshields parked at Gray’s Creek High School during a Friday night football game.
Hateful leaflets covertly left during Friday night football, a sacred ritual throughout North Carolina and elsewhere in small-town America, sparked high decibel local objection and widespread national media attention—a perfect storm for the Loyal White Knights of the KKK.
How the KKK is targeting high school students in white supremacy recruitment,” wrote Newsweek magazine.
“KKK tries to recruit members by posting flyers outside high school football game,” headlined the New York Daily News.
“The #KKK Are Recruiting Right Here In Wake County, NC!” said K95 radio
KKK distributes flyers outside North Carolina football game,” said USA Today. “The Ku Klux Klan chose to target a high school football game for its defense of Confederate statues, sending a North Carolina school district scrambling to determine why the racist organization chose a high school football game as the ground on which to spread targeted racist propaganda.”
“We are aware of the unapproved distribution of material on the campus of Gray’s Creek High School Friday night during the football game which is currently being investigated,” Gray’s Creek principal Lisa Stewart said.
Stewart said “James Spears, the groups great titan”, had confirmed to media that the LWK had distributed the leaflets.
When speaking to the press, Barker often uses one of several false aliases and fictitious, flamboyant Klan titles . This time it was “James Spears” the “Grand Titan” for his Klan faction. Other times he has used the name Robert Jones, telling media in Illinois, Alabama, South Carolina, and more than a dozen other states that he is the Grand Dragon living in their state.
In truth, there is no James Spears or Robert Jones, the latter the name of an historical North Carolina Klan leader who died years ago.
The success of the media blitz of the Fayetteville high school leafleting was roundly applauded by Barker. “N.C. Grand Dragon pisses off whole community LOL, hitting a football game smart thinking,” he wrote to members, attaching a Charlotte Observer news story. “I did news report with female reporter she sounded MAD LOL.”
The local Cumberland County Sheriff’s criminal intelligence division investigated the High School leafleting and concluded they were distributed by “just some people trying to make trouble” and there was no organized KKK activity in the county.
According to internal Loyal White Knights documents, there are at least five active members in the Fayetteville area.
Over the Martin Luther King holiday weekend three months later in January, more leaflets were placed in mail boxs in the Roslin Farms development, also in Grays Creek, North Carolina
Loyal White Knights Members near Fayetteville, North Carolina
“The Fayetteville cops said the leaflets were not the work of the Klan,” wrote Justin, the LWK Klailiff–or vice president–for Pennsylvania.
“That’s great, clever too, that means we have friends in the police department,” replied Kevin Beair, the Exalted Cyclops for Pennsylvania
“A reader sent me an email on Sunday, Jan. 14 with the message: ‘Found these by my mailbox. I live in Roslin Farms in Grays Creek,’” wrote Myron Pitts, a columnist for the Fayetteville Observer, on being alerted to the racist literature by a distraught
citizen. “The next day was the holiday honoring Martin Luther King Jr.’s birthday.”
What Pitts did not know was the reader who sent him the email was the Imperial Kilgrap–or national secretary–for the Loyal White Knights, Jennifer Renick, of Hope Mills and Red Springs, North Carolina who had distributed the leaflets the night before she emailed him posing as an outraged recipient of the hate fliers.
“Yay me and Roger made it again,” wrote Jennifer Renick on January 23 of this year, attaching a link to the Fayetteville Observer article written by Mr. Pitts which denounced her Martin Luther King leaflet excoriating the civil rights icon.
Ms. Renick boasted to other members of her success in generating media attention. “It took them long enough to report it lol. He got my email after all hahaha.”
Ms. Renick also sent an email to Mr. Pitts back in October posing then, also, as an offended recipient of the bigoted pamphlets, and alerting Pitts to her own leafletting at the High School football game.
Ms. Renick and her husband, the North Carolina Grand Dragon for the LWK, Roger Renick, also of Hope Mills and Red Springs, were responsible for the fliers at both the October Friday night football game at Gray’s Creek High School and those distributed on MLK day, as they are for many other clandestine flier drops in the area surrounding Fayetteville. The husband and wife team have long been confederates of Mr. Barker.
The LWK Exalted Cyclops for the Commonwealth off Pennsylvania, Kevin Beair, then left racist comments on the article Mr. Pitt’s, who is black, published in the Observer.
“MLK was the light? What a joke. Everything about the man from his eyes to his skin to his mind is black. He was a drunk sex pervert and hated America and the white race,” wrote Beair.
“He was also a Jewish puppet who didn’t even write his own speeches. The laws that King helped get passed have done nothing but devastate America. This was a much better country in the 1950’s for everyone under segregation. I don’t care how many libtards foam at the mouth, that’s the truth. Suck it up.”
Earlier, leaflets were distributed by the Renick husband and wife team targeting the integrated neighborhood of Massey Hills in Fayetteville. The incendiary leaflet pictured a black man and read “TO ALL NIGGERS!: Anyone of you black apes caught ‘making eyes’ at a white girl will be beaten with bats and your mothers won’t get anymo’ bananas–that’s a promise!”
“This is serious business, man. They are talking about killing people, man,“ Antonio Smith, a black man from Fayetteville told a local TV news affiliate. “My friends were very, very upset. They wanted to go and hurt somebody because they figured that everybody would just point at the blacks.”
“If you want me to join something, come knock on my door and talk to me like a man,” said Bill Murray of Fayetteville, a white man who had LWK leaflets left in his yard. “I think it is ignorant. I mean we are Americans, we got to stand up for each other. Color shouldn’t be a thing. I mean God created all men equal. Don’t send me this crap. Come knock on my door, that way I can tell you how ignorant you are and slam the door in your face,” he added.
Brian Hicks, whose children are students at Gray’s Creek, also received the leaflets at his home. “We threw them away. Everybody just wants to get along and it seems like one thing after another this year at school that’s come up that’s pulling against everybody.”
Casey Umland, 23, Port St. Lucie, Florida
“Who is spreading a message of hate? That’s what police in Port St. Lucie wanted to know, as fliers promoting hate groups and denigrating others turned up on utility poles in the city,” asked a local Florida TV station on February 5.
The single person in South Florida that local authorities, religious leaders, and the community were trying to identify is 23-year old Casey Umland, an unemployed only child still living with his widowed father in Port St Lucie, Florida. Umland caused a flurry of community angst and media attention after taping anti-Semitic Loyal White Knights posters on the front door of a local synagogue and elsewhere in the city.
Umland distributed hand drawn posters, which law enforcement forensic specialists identified as created by him, reading “Yahweh Hates You!” and “Hitler did nothing wrong” and “Christ Killer!” and “Heil Hitler” scrawled beside hand drawn images of swastikas.
The posters included references to the bible passage Revelations 2:9: “I know the blasphemy of them which say they are Jews, and are not, but are the synagogue of Satan.”
Responding to a journalist’s email inquiry by telephone, Mr. Umland lost his temper and said “you need to stop snooping around and mind your own business” and concluded “Burn in Hell!” before he hung up.
“I recently made the news in my town for fuckin’ with Jews LOL,” Unman wrote February 5 in messages to his Loyal White Knights compatriots, attaching a link to TV coverage of the leaflet he placed on the front door of the Port St Lucie synagogue.
“For someone to say Hitler did nothing wrong is very disturbing” said Temple Beth Israel Rabbi Bruce Benson in an interview. “We have many survivors of the holocaust who are members of this congregation.”
When contacted, Umland first denied he was responsible for the hateful posters. “NEVER ONCE did I admit to putting that flyer on that synagogue. I never took responsibility for that, nor have I been charged or convicted of it. So that is SLANDER. You like getting sued? I hope not.”
But when confronted with his own messages on the Loyal White Knights private chat forums taking credit for the hate campaign, he changed his story.
“How the hell did you get that? What I’m being investigated for was a hate crime. I can get in serious trouble, even get jail time for that,” he wrote. “If I was already convicted and it was said and done, I would do your little Jew interview. Even though I don’t like race traitor media rats, I’d still do it for the publicity. No such thing as bad publicity. I’ll have to ask my superior officer first though.”
The FBI defines a hate crime as a “criminal offense against a person or property motivated in whole or in part by an offender’s bias against a race, religion, disability, sexual orientation, ethnicity, gender, or gender identity.”
Hate itself is not a crime and constitutional protections of freedom of speech, belief, and religion ensure that what many consider offensive bigotry is not a crime in itself. A hate crime requires targeting an individual with a threat– which is a criminal act–such as trespassing on the property of a synagogue and threatening to harm worshippers, which is what Mr. Umland arguably did.
Even his Klan superior officer chastised him for creating his own handmade posters and trespassing on the private property of a Jewish synagogue because Umland was tiptoeing over the boundaries of what could constitute a hate crime.
Florida law enforcement say they have proof Umland is responsible, but it is not clear he committed a crime. “We have already determined that Mr. Umland was responsible for the flyers,” said Port St. Lucie Detective Katherine Meyer in an interview. “We have analyzed the posters and there is no question he was the author. We found his palm prints on them. But we have not determined whether there was a criminal violation.”
After being visited by Port St Lucie police, Umland lashed out February 5, on his Facebook page under his real name. “Detectives are investigating people posting ‘racist hate flyers’. Isn’t it sick that we have savage drug gangs and illegal criminal aliens running around committing violent crimes, terrorizing innocent people, and yet they’re worried about finding out who put some paper on a pole.” He called Port St Lucie police “clowns for wasting the American People’s tax dollars on investigating bullshit ‘thought-crimes’…why don’t y’all go solve some real crimes, and quit being willing puppets for the anti-American communist deep state!”
Mr. Umland’s Klan membership profile reads “I love studying scripture, trucks, reading about history, & guns. Growing up in the South I went to majority nigger & wetback schools, and I have experienced the violence first hand by mud race’s gang lifestyles. Even though I have seen how much they HATE me, I still don’t HATE them. They are doing just what they do naturally. I don’t hate them pigs anymore than I hate rattlesnakes. I just wouldn’t want to have a bunch of rattlesnakes around me. Let them be with their own rattlesnakes…”
On February 9, Umland responded to screen grabs sent to him from private KKK message discussion boards where he took credit for trespassing on synagogue property and taping handwritten posters supporting the holocaust and, in his own handwriting, scrawled “six million more to go.”
“OK. So now I can tell people in the Loyal White Knights that there are leaks in their group and warn them,” Umland wrote. “I don’t care if you put my name out there, people already hate me. Christ said you will be hated. My concern is that people will try and hurt my family.”
In a series of 31 telephone conversations and emails in February, Umland said he does not “trust media people because Jews control the media. I’ve seen how they twist people’s words.”
He added “My beliefs aren’t special. I believe what every other Klansman believes. I’m a nationalist Christian who believes Whites are the supreme race and God’s chosen people. Jews are Satan’s children; the Edomites, our evil twin brother; blacks are just lower humans who should be separate from us; and America belongs to the white race only. That’s all you really need to know about what I believe. Put that in your publication, and tell them I said it. It’s really that simple. I’m nobody special, just a white man who wants his people to have a future. I don’t hate you for what you do. You’re my brother at the end of the day (unless you’re a Jew or mongrel. I’m assuming you’re white). I just hope you wake up and repent before almighty Yahweh so you too can be saved.”
But his own online footprint suggests Umland is also a lonely, angry, and conflicted young man.
“I’m male, 21 yo, live in (area code) 772/Port Saint Lucie…Don’t know anybody in the area, not new to the area, just have no friends” he wrote in his profile on a “fetish oriented” sex meet up social media group called “Archive Of Sins”.
Exalted Cyclops Kevin Beair, 36, of Waynesboro, Pennsylvania
A gun-toting, pro-Nazi, anti-Semite, unapologetically racist white supremacist from Waynesboro, Pennsylvania, Kevin Beair, 36, is the Exalted Cyclops for the Keystone States after joining the Loyal White Knights in October 2016.
Beair is responsible for numerous leaflet drops distributed throughout the mid-Atlantic states in recent months, and regularly attends LWK gathering and demonstrations, including in Charlottesville, Virginia in the summer of 2017, where he paced back and forth screaming insults, political slogans, and aggressively gesturing at counter protestors while dressed in black battle dress uniform adorned with KKK patches, sunglasses, a blond crew cut, and a holstered .40 Glock strapped to his hip, .
But Mr. Beair, a native of western Maryland, spends most days online creating bigoted YouTube videos, incessantly writing hateful comments to newspaper articles and blog posts, and chatting with his fellow Klansmen in their private chatroom.
He uses several online nom de guerres, including CyberPunk733, Evolution33, Keith Beair, Beairtheflair, and his birth name.
Belair, according to internal LWK documents and background checks, appears to lead an upstanding life as a law-abiding citizen citizen. His criminal history consists of a single traffic ticket in Pennsylvania several years ago.
Mr. Beair is a well-paid draftsman in his public life who likes Harley Davidson motorcycles, Chevrolet Camaros, but does not like Blacks, Jews, immigrants, or liberals.
In his secret life as an Internet troll, he is a full throated bigot and supporter of Adolph Hitler.
Beair’s denied he was a Klansman when contacted by a reporter in February, falsely claiming that he was from Texas and didn’t know anything about the Loyal White Knights.
“Sorry, I have no idea what any of this is. I believe you have the wrong person. I live in Texas so no where near that area,” wrote Mr. Beair from the same email address, firstname.lastname@example.org, he lists on the LWK membership profile for other members to contact him.
That email address links directly to another online name, CyberPunk733.
CyberPunk733 is the moniker under which Beair is pictured in numerous racist YouTube video lectures extolling the virtues of White Supremacism, Hitler, and the Loyal White Knights and the same man whose photograph is attached to Beair’s Loyal White Knights membership profile and photographed at Loyal White Knights public demonstrations .
Mr. Beair took down the YouTube videos within minutes of the email conversation with a reporter, but not before numerous screen grabs showing him to be the same man pictured in Loyal White Knights documents.
Over the Martin Luther King holiday weekend in January, he blanketed neighborhoods in Louden County, Virginia, outside Washington, D.C with fliers condemning the civil rights icon as a “communist pervert.”
In the early morning hours of Sunday, February 11, according to internal Ku Klux Klan written documents, Beair returned to the county and threw hundreds more anti-Semetic and bigoted fliers in other communities.
In December, Beair blanketed a stretch of rural Pennsylvania near Westminster with racist leaflets and copies of a DVD he made on his home computer.
Condemnation of Loyal White Knights hate literature by elected officials, law enforcement, and church groups in Minnesota, Virginia, New York, Florida, and North Carolina towns apparently upset the volatile Beair.After a leaflet drop in a string of small towns in the Minnesota Iron Range, Beair suggested his Klan group launch a campaign of intimidation against the Minnesota elected Mayor and those who objected to the flier drop.
“Everybody start putting comments on these articles. Let’s tear these people up,” Beair wrote in January, which Belair then proceeded to do.
“Only 1.4% of whites owned slave while 28% of free blacks and 40% of jews owned slaves in America. This is 1860 cencus data,” wrote Beair
using his real name in comments left on the January 18, 2018 Minnesota Twin Cities Pioneer Press article on the LWK leafletting. “And all 12 slave ships were owned by jews. Yet you ignorant fools are still blaming whites for slavery. America was in a hell of a lot better shape in 1900-1960 under integration (sic) than this giant welfare,
crime riddled, cesspool we call America today.
45% of blacks live on welfare and 20% are in prison and the federal government is 21 trillion in debt… what progress, yeah, we really need more of this “equality & diversity” trash.”
All of the statistics cited by the Pennsylvania Klansmen are false. Also commenting on the Minnesota newspaper story was Casey Umland, the LWK member from Port St Lucie, Florida (see above profile).
In Louden County, Virginia around the Martin Luther King holiday weekend in January 2018, Loyal White Knight’s member and Maryland native Kevin Beair, 36, now of Waynesboro, Pennsylvania, Calvin Neighbors, 57, who lives a few hundred feet from the West Virginia border in Gore, Virginia, and James Seay aka James Moore dropped hundreds of leaflets in several communities throughout the county and elsewhere in Virginia.
The leaflets, which caused widespread public outrage, fear, and community self-reflection, denigrated the civil rights icon as a “sex pervert” and “communist”
None of the three Klansman, who were all congratulated by Imperial Wizard Barker and other members for the widespread media attention the flier drop garnered, lives in Loudoun County, according to internal LWK documents.
“Everybody thank James Moore and Calvin Neighbors plus Kevin Beair for their Knight Ride in Virginia (which) pissed off the NAACP,” wrote Barker on their password protected Internet discussion board. “They called the Feds and the FBI said there is nothing anybody can do. Passing out Klan fliers is LEGAL so for the paranoid people on here who are scared to pass out leaflets, here is your proof.” Barker attached a link to a news story by a Virginia television story in his message to LWK members.
The Klan Imperial Wizard is correct that the flyers do not usually qualify as a hate crime or civil rights violation as they avoid directly targeting specific people, ethnic or religious groups, according to local, state and federal law enforcement officials. “Legal can’t get you (on) anything LOL…Be a Man join the Klan,” he wrote other LWK members.
“Jews still mad about our night ride. They met with the State Police,” wrote Imperial Wizard Barker referring to the MLK holiday weekend leafleting of Virginia.
“I wrote a letter to county sheriff and state police. I sent it as an anonymous letter,” replied Beair.
“These NAACP blacks are so phoney. He says with a straight face that blacks do commit violent crimes, only the KKK does. And the ones he mentions are all fakes,” wrote Beair on March 1st in a comment town article posted on the Internet.
“Dylan Roof–fake. The kid in the challenger (James Fields, who ran his Dodge Challenger into a crowd of counter-protestors in Charlottesville, Virginia last August, killing one woman) was being chased by a commie professor with a gun, and the girl dies of a heart attack, not by getting hit by the car,” wrote Beair, repeating discredited conspiracy theories that are popular nd seen as truth among the extreme right wing.”… and truthfully the KKK never lynched anyone, the government lynched criminals.. google search for a photo of the klan lynching anyone and you wont find any… the NAACP lives on lies, blacks commit crime at in the mutilples of hundreds compared to whites,” writs Beair.
The Loyal Whites in New York State
The New York Grand Dragon for the Loyal White Knights of the Ku Klux Klan, Douglas Munker, 36, has a history of mental health problems, criminal charges, and drug abuse.
Munker joined the LWK over the Internet in 2014 and soon homophobic, racist, and anti-Semitic Klan literature began popping up around the small Long Island town of Hampton Bays.
“A lot of people think it is illegal to be a member of the KKK. But guess what? It is all protected under the first amendment (to the constitution), Freedom of Association, free press, and freedom of assembly,” said Munker in a LWK recruitment video he posted on YouTube. “If you feel your rights are being taken away, we are the only organization fighting for white civil rights. If you are white and proud and want to join the crowd and you want to save our land, join the Klan.”
“A lot of our rights are being stripped from us and a lot of people don’t know their rights, he added.
Munker is less concerned about the rights of others.
He advocates halting all non-white European immigration, implementing a “shoot to kill” policy at U.S. land borders, making homosexuality illegal, a return to segregation laws, and the annihilation of all Jews.
Munker posts signs reading “No Coloreds Allowed” and “Diversity=Genetic Problems=White Genocide.”
“I used to work with this guy. There was a sigh of relief from his co-workers when he finally left as there was an air of tension in the air while he was there,” said one resident of Hampton Bays. “He was ashamed of nothing and had absolutely no remorse for anything he said no matter how stupid. I always felt that he was just looking for attention.”
Unemployed, Munker receives disability and social security checks from the government, according to Klan sources and Munker himself.
In 2011, Munker wrote to his high school classmates in Shirley, New York that he was “retired/disabled” at age 29 and is “the missing link to my family, who I never get to see. What can I say? I just need to chill.”
Loyal White Knights members say Munker is one of the most active members and has attended almost all LWK public and private gathering over the last four years.
According to LWK sources and public documents, Munker has been committed to both prison and mental health facilities. Rarely ever seen without his dark sunglasses, Munker has two teardrops tattooed below his eye, a a prison tattoo usually associated with gangs.
Between 2001 and 2015, Munker was arrested at least eight times.
In November 2012, the then 30-year old Munker was arrested at 10:35 p.m. after closing hours in the parking lot of a shopping mall in Hampton Bays in his parked car with an underage girl, oxycodone pills, and marijuana.
He was charged with criminal possession of a controlled substance, endangering the welfare of a child, and providing drugs to an underage female.
Munker was arrested again in September 2015 in Hampton Bays with a black powder antique pistol and brass knuckles and charged with felony weapons possession.
In early 2017, after a handful of unemployed high school friends in Fulton County joined the Loyal White Knights over the Internet, Munker moved to Gloversville in upstate New York, where he and the small group instantly became the nucleus of what was until then a largely dormant New York chapter of the Loyal White Knights.
Since then, there have been thousands of racist, homophobic, and anti-Semitic leaflets dropped by the group in a string of villages, towns, and small cities in Fulton and neighboring Montgomery Counties causing fear and outrage among residents who do not know if hundreds in their communities are members of a secret society of anonymous, violent racists.
Residents of the economically depressed former textile manufacturing area describe a small town terror campaign that has been waged for more than a year by a gang of extreme right wing Nazi sympathizers and white supremacists, who spread their angry message against neighbors and strangers alike.
In 2017, a lesbian couple was targeted by LWK members based in Gloversville with online threats of “slitting dykes’ throats.” Other messages of intimidation were sent saying they would “hang niggers and spics in trees.”
Gloversville residents say that they routinely see white youth strut down the street defiantly displaying racist Klan imagery and wearing swastikas.
Rodney Schuyler of Johnstown said he was taken aback last summer when he “witnessed two people with white supremacist clothing out in public. One was a man sporting a ‘White Pride World Wide’ T-shirt at a local gas station, and the other was a young man in a camouflage jacket prominently featuring KKK and swastika patches on the shoulders. These open displays of hate indicated to me that white supremacists feel comfortable in our community.”
The Exalted Cyclops–or local leader-of the Loyal White Knights in Gloversville is Nate Coty.
In 2017, he and his wife, Joleen, his younger sister Salinda, and her husband Dylan Brown lived together in a house where they hung KKK flags from their windows facing the street as part of an unrelenting campaign of intimidation that included anonymously spreading leaflets in numerous Fulton County area communities and engaging in vicious online hate campaigns targeting gay and non-whites living in the county.
“They threatened to use my kids as ‘human speed bumps’ and posted their pictures on the Internet,” Nicole Martish of Gloversville said in an interview. “We all went to high school together. They lived down the street from me.”
She named the local head of the terror gang as Nate Coty and his housemates as among her antagonists.
“Well, I put my Loyal White Knights flag up to let them know they may want to relocate,” Coty says to other Klansmen.
“I sent him a few Loyal White Knights Flyers,” said LWK member Timmy Lucas of Fayetteville, North Carolina.
“I sent another,” added LWK member Eddie Rudisill of West Virginia.”Run that Faggot off, man. Give him Hell everyday. Klasp.” ‘Klasp’ is a KKK acronym for “Klan loyalty a sacred principle.”
Ms. Martish says the Loyal White Knights members object to her biracial pre-teen daughter.
“My little girl is black. She goes to school. She is 11-years old, and to fear to take her even out of her home because these people are spewing hatred? Who are you? They don’t even want to say who they are,” said the Gloversville mother in an interview.
She said LWK leaflets were being spread throughout the Gloversville area, inciting fear among many in the otherwise quiet city.
As a result of her naming them publicly, “I have been flooded with death threats,” she said.
Campaign of Terror
Ku Klux Klan fliers first began appearing in Fulton County, New York around Valentine’s Day in February 2017 simultaneously to the group in Gloversville first joining the Loyal White Knights.
It was then that, in Fort Plain in adjoining Montgomery County, a Gloversville man was charged with violating a local ordinance for “peddling without a permit” for placing anti-gay Ku Klux Klan leaflets on the windshields of cars. The name of the man was not released “for his own safety,” said Fort Plain police.
“He has absolutely no affiliation with the KKK,” insisted Fort Plain police Chief Ryan Austin at the time. “His exact words during the interview when we conducted it were, ‘I did this to stir the pot.’”
Flyers also popped up in Gloversville at the same time. Police said they believed it was the same suspect from Fort Plain.
“He admitted to doing it in Gloversville area, but to my knowledge, the Klan is not actively recruiting here,” said Chief Austin. “He is not a member of the Klan. He admitted in the interview that ‘Nope, I just saw it online and I became upset.’”
Local law enforcement was wrong.
The man detained in Fort Plain and Gloversville was Nate Coty, 36, law enforcement sources confirmed.
Coty is the Exalted Cyclops–or local leader–for the Loyal White Knights of the KKK in New York.
One Gloversville mother ran across Nate Coty and his wife Joleen on main street in downtown Gloversville in the summer of 2017. The Klan couple had been harassing, threatening and intimidating the woman, she said, because her 11-year old daughter is biracial. The woman confronted the Coty’s and began filming them with her iPhone when, outside the Gloversville post office, Joleen Coty turned around and flashed a knife at her. Nate Coty then pulled out a handgun and faced their accuser. See below videotape for footage of the event.
Fall 2017 home video taken on main street Gloversville, New York of local LWK Klan leader Nate Coty and his wife, Joleen, threatening another resident with a gun and knife because they objected to her 12-year old child being biracial
Residents of Fort Plain objected to the Klan fliers distributed in their village. “My girlfriend’s daughter is married to a black person and I got no problem with it,” Eugene Buley told WNYT. “He’s just like you and me. Stuff like that should have gone out a long, long, long time ago. It disgusts me.”
“We don’t need those people around here because they have twisted minds,” another resident, Joan Eckler, told the station.
The Klan group also distributed Valentine’s Day-themed anti-gay recruitment flyers that month in Saratoga Springs in Montgomery County exhorting whites to “love your own race” and condemning “race mixing” and homosexuality.
“It was horrible what was on there you know, slurs and racial slurs,” Saratoga Springs resident Enda Cormican, who found one of the flyers on his car, told WNYT-TV.
Since the beginning of 2017, multiple racist, anti-Semitic, and anti-gay flier campaigns have spread anonymously in villages and small towns and cities like Gloversville, Fort Plain, Johnstown, Saratoga Springs, Northville, St Johnsville, Mayfield, and elsewhere in upstate New York.
In June, fliers, placed inside sandwich bags containing cat litter, were found in the Fulton County village of Northville. The Fulton County Sheriff’s Office assured residents the cat litter was harmless and meant to weigh down the baggies in order to toss onto lawns.
Fulton County Sheriff Richard Giardino said it was the work of “people trying to stir up interest” in joining the group. “We’re trying to determine who did it,” Giardino said.
These Loyal White Knights fliers were titled “Kool Kids Klub,” and were distributed along with other fliers urging people to attend a July 8, 2017 KKK rally in Charlottesville, Virginia.
Loyal White Knights members Joseph Meredith, Nate and Joleen Coty, New York Grand Dragon Douglas Munker, and a handful of others from Gloversville and nearby communities, travelled to Charlottesville to attend the July KKK sponsored demonstration which ended in violence and 23 arrests.
About 30 LWK members had to be extracted by armored personnel carriers surrounded by hundreds of law enforcement dressed in full riot gear to escape nearly 1000 angry counter demonstrators.
More than 20 of the Loyal White Knights were armed with handguns, according to Charlottesville police department documents obtained in this investigation.
After Charlottesville, the Gloversville crew came back home emboldened.
“We came back to Johnstown in the summer and one day we saw a guy in Walmart with a swastika patch on one arm and a KKK patch on the other arm,” said Marjorie Kline of Johnstown. “Earlier that day we saw a guy wearing a ‘White Power World Wide’ t-shirt. So we were already on edge from people who feel emboldened enough to walk around at a gas station and Walmart wearing Nazi and white supremacist symbols in public. They obviously feel too comfortable in our community.”
In late July, LWK fliers were again dropped on lawns in Gloversville–at least the fifth time in that small city in 2017.
The fliers read “save our nation!” and had images of an American flag, a Bible, a headstone, and a hypodermic needle. “You aren’t the only one at the end of your rope.”
The Gloversville Police Department did interview a person of interest, but he was not charged with any crime. Law enforcement sources confirmed the person was Nate Coty–the same person charged earlier in the year in Fort Plain and who police believe was responsible for other Klan fliers distributed in Gloversville.
The next month, several of the Gloversville Klan attended the far right wing demonstration led by American Nazis and other white nationalist extremists on August 12 in Charlottesville. That event grabbed national headlines when it descended into chaotic violence and one woman killed when she was run over by a car driven by a young right wing extremist.
Since then, Mr. Meredith, Mr. Coty, Mr. Munker, and the handful of other white youth from Fulton County and nearby communities have ratcheted up their small town terror campaign.
“The war has begun! Grab your guns and your rope!,” wrote Nate Coty on Twitter under the name Whiteman1488s’ on August 13, the day after the violence in Charlottesville. “It is time to take back what is ours. White Power!”
By August more than two dozen drops of hateful leaflets in Fulton County and nearby towns had occurred since the start of the year, all urging people to call the Loyal White Knights “hotline number” or contact them over the Internet.
Internal Loyal White Knights records show that the small group of Gloversville based youth distributed all these fliers.
In late August 2017, Fort Plain police opened an investigation into another covert distribution of LWK hate literature found on cars in a parking lot in the business district between a public park and a bank urging people to join the Klan faction.
“The community as a whole doesn’t believe in any of their beliefs,” said Fort Plain police chief Austin said at the time. “I have not come across anybody that does believe that type of stuff in my work here.”
The Klan and the media spotlight
But it was in September that the Gloversville-based group caught the full attention Of Fulton County.
On September 24, 2017 a message was left on the Fulton County Leader-Herald newspaper’s voice mail. The caller didn’t identify himself, but said he represented the Loyal White Knights of the Ku Klux Klan in New York.
“We are here. We are growing. Gloversville is full of Klan members. Fulton County is full of Klan members. We are all over New York state. We are not going to stop.”
According to LWK sources, the caller was Nate Coty of Gloversville, although he was never identified by the newspaper.
This jump started an early October three part series of front page stories in the Leader-Herald about the emergence of the KKK in Fulton County, New York.
The October 8 Sunday front page pictured four Klansmen in robes and hoods or wearing battle dress uniforms and using fake names.
The stories were based on five people using false names and wearing Klan regalia and sunglasses.
The real names of the five Gloversville residents are Douglas Munker; Nate Coty; his wife, Joleen; Coty’s younger sister, Salinda Brown; and her husband, Dylan Brown–at that time all living in the same house, and four of them from the same family.
“Gary Munker” aka Douglas Munker and “Ben Christian” aka Nate Coty claimed to the Leader-Herald the Klan was growing exponentially and now had 200 members in Fulton County, including “local teachers, lawyers and doctors…happily claiming Klan membership.”
They said New York State had 4000 members.
Munker had been living on Long Island for 15 years when in 2015 he was arrested for taping LWK posters on an ATM machine and charged with distributing a handbill in violation of town code.
Prior, Munker denied being a member of the Loyal White Knights, but in April 2015 he changed his story and publicly said he was the local chapter head. Munker said there were 100 members in Hampton Bays, Long Island alone and more in other active chapters in Shirley, Babylon, Port Jefferson and elsewhere in upstate New York.
In fact, according to LWK documents, Munker was the sole Klansman on all of Long Island.
Munker told AFP news agency on November 22, 2016 that the New York branch of the KKK had received 1,000 enquiries from people interested in joining since the election of Donald Trump.
At other times, Munker has claimed the group had 200 members in New York State.
And last October, Doug Munker and Nate Coty claimed there were 200 members of the Loyal White Knights in Fulton County alone and 4,000 in New York State.
“There’s no way there’s 200 people in Fulton County that are members of the KKK. There maybe some discrimination going on, but I don’t believe there are 200 active members of the KKK in Fulton County. Our police chief has not seen that. Our sheriff doesn’t believe that,” said Gloversville Mayor Dayton King.
The Mayor is right.
Membership records of the Loyal White Knights show the LWK figures to be quantum fiction.
There are not 4000 members in New York state nor 200 in Fulton County.
There are precisely nine members of the Loyal White Knights in Fulton County, according to the Loyal White Knights internal national membership roster obtained in this investigation.
And four of them are from the same family and live in the same house in Gloversville.
These Loyal White Knights documents show that, as of March 2018, the entire state of New York has 19 members, including eight who have applied for or inquired about membership but have yet to become formal members. And none of them are “teachers, lawyers, or doctors.”
According to investigations into the backgrounds of each member, most are unemployed, most of the New York state members are in their twenties, and most attended high school together in Fulton County.
All 19 members contacted the LWK online and called their “hotline” telephone number” in 2017 and, in exchange for $20 sent by money order made out to Amanda Barker to a Pelham, North Carolina post office box or via Google wallet, were sent membership cards.
None had ever been to a Klan sponsored event before going the group.
They then bought their Klan robes, flags, and patches from the “Mom and Pop” run Klan group, paying by either money order or Google wallet.
The LWK has had its Pay Pal account, its website, its Twitter account, its You Tube account, its Google plus account, and other digital platforms terminated for racist content since the deadly event in Charlottesville, Virginia in August 2017 sparked a crackdown on extremists using social media as a platform to recruit and disseminate hateful, threatening, and discriminatory content.
The paper allowed them to use false names “because they fear possibly getting fired from their jobs or other retribution for being Klan members,” wrote the Leader-Herald. “Both Munker, a carpenter, and Christian, an engineer for a local company, said the KKK has instilled a pride,” made them “better” people, and given them more “confidence.”
In truth, Munker is not a “carpenter” and Coty is not an “engineer”. Both men are unemployed, although Coty has said he is an “independent tattoo artist.”
The early October series of front page stories in the Times-Leader sparked a tsunami of public reaction and community backlash, much of it accusing the newspaper of publishing unverified claims giving the Klan group distorted and exaggerated coverage and inciting unwarranted fear in residents.
Gloversville Mayor Dayton King was annoyed with the widely read stories in the Times-Leader.
“We’ve been working very hard over the last few years. Businesses are looking to come here, people are looking to move in” Gloversville Mayor Dayton King said of the economically depressed former textile manufacturing area. “I would think that if someone was staying in our city last weekend, picked up the front page of our local newspaper and it says ‘the KKK is thriving in Fulton County’, they would probably second guess coming here,” the Mayor told a local cable television news station.
“(The Leader-Herald) has given a platform to four people that go by fake names. They don’t really know who they are and they are just saying anything and they printed it,” said Mayor King. “Many are wondering do I have to be worried about this? Is the KKK in Gloversville?”
“Our minorities become a little more fearful, a little more on the lookout, and the people who are bigots become more empowered,” Gloversville City Council member Vincent DeSantis said.
With a population of 55,000, Fulton County is 95.99%, 1.80% African American, and 1.61% Hispanic or Latino of any race, according to the most recent census data. The city of Gloversville is 93.4% white, 2.8% African American, and 3.4% Hispanic or Latino of any race among there 15,000 population.
Most Klan members routinely have their Facebook and Twitter accounts accounts suspended, often for 30 days, for violating Facebook standards for offensive content. As a result, most KKK members maintain several Facebook accounts under aliases in order to communicate with like minded White Nationalists.
“Are there people who think that way? Maybe. I think you’ve got four people who remain anonymous who want to meet up in the woods and demanded an article in the press. And the Leader-Herald caved in and they gave them front-page news,” he said.
Times Tribune publisher Trevor Evans defended the news series. “Our writer spent a good eight, nine days straight … just doing this story,” Evans said. “I will back my writer, and he believes that there are 200 members” of the Klan in Fulton County. The stories received 42,000 views online, which Evans said was the most ever for the newspaper.
After the stories were published, local residents banded together to demonstrate their opposition to the Klan presence in their communities.
In response, Church vigils were convened, numerous police investigations launched, public demonstrations held, and community forums on race relations attended by elected officials from a number of communities.
In Mid-October, Nate Coty’s wife Joleen Coty, sent another message to the Loyal White Knights on their private members chatroom site saying “they are trying to push us out, but we not going nowhere.”
Joleen Coty was referring to two community events spontaneously organized for that October weekend in Gloversville and nearby Johnstown to oppose the growing presence of the Klan group in Fulton County.
“There are more people like us than people like that,” said Marjorie Kline of Johnstown, whose group ‘Glove Cities Huddle’ organized a public meeting at the Johnstown library that was attended by residents, television camera crews, and the Mayor of Gloversville.
“When I came home for Thanksgiving, I stopped at Walmart and saw people wearing sweatshirts with KKK slogans,” said B. Pinkerton Prata in December 2017. “It is scary that most of them are not in hiding. They are right in front of us and don’t give a fuck.”
Rodney Schuyler moved back to the area last summer and saw Klan recruiting fliers in his hometown of Johnstown. At first he dismissed them as a prank, but then encountered twice in one day people wearing white supremacist T-shirts with KKK slogans and Nazi symbols while shopping. “This indicated to me this wasn’t just a prank,” he said in an interview. “I’m sure they’re exaggerating that there’s 200” KKK members in Fulton County, Schuyler said. “I hope so. But that’s not the point.” The point, he said, is that a “violent terrorist organization” is operating in his hometown “without feeling any need to conceal itself. This is not something that’s acceptable here. … This is a direct threat to our community.”
After the high profile public reaction to the Leader Herald series of articles, Gloversville residents appealed to the landlord of the Coty’s to evict them. The landlord had received a tsunami of complaints for months from neighbors detailing a campaign of racist and homophobic threats, intimidation, and harassment by the white supremacist gang and she ordered them to vacate the property by the end of October. The Klan group moved back into Coty’s parents house on Trenton street in Gloversville.
“KIGY (KKK acronym for Klansman I greet you) Brothers and Sisters. With everything going on, our landlord is evicting us. We will probably only have until the end of this month,” wrote Nate Coty to other Klan members on their members-only live chatroom in October 2017. “This is going to be devastating to us. We will have nowhere to go with hardly any money. I’m not sure what I am going to do. Please pray for our family. I am truly lost with this.”
But despite their eviction, the Coty’s and the Brown’s continued to ramp up their nocturnal spreading of racist hate literature to nearby communities from the Coty’s parents house on Temple street in Gloversville in November 2017 , according to sources in Gloversville familiar with the group and Loyal White Knights members who remained in contact with the Gloversville Klan group.
More Loyal White Knights leaflets were distributed after Halloween last October, on Martin Luther King Day this January 2018, and again on Valentine’s day in February, resulting in significant media attention and more community objections, including spontaneous meetings of civic groups and fervent comments from local elected officials.
In January this year, Johnstown Mayor Vern Jackson said a resident delivered a KKK flyer to his office found on their windshield, and other residents complained of similar incidents. Jackson said anyone caught placing flyers on private property could be charged with trespassing and a vehicle traffic infraction.
Who Are the KKK in Gloversville, New York?
Mr. Coty and his associates don’t make for very sympathetic figures.
“Glad to say Joe Knighthawk and me made the news today,” Nate Coty told other LWK members, attaching a link to a local television news report on his and another LWK member’s covert leafleting in the predawn hours of January 15, 2018 in the former manufacturing city of Johnstown.
The leaflet was the same one produced at the LWK North Carolina headquarters and, in a coordinated effort to mark the Martin Luther King holiday memorializing the civil rights icon, distributed to scores of communities from the east coast to California.
“Joe Knighthawk”‘s, who Coty credited with participating in the late night leaflet drop alongside him, real name is Joseph Marriott, of Gloversville.
Marriott been in the news in upstate New York for other things recently, also.
In January, 2013, Marriott, 30, was arrested and charged with 52 counts of animal cruelty after New York State Police confiscated scores of dogs living in their own feces chained and caged in an unheated barn in sub freezing temperatures.
State Police rescued the mostly pit bulls who were chained or caged in an unheated barn and suffering from frostbite, open sores, and worms, their water bowls frozen solid. Some were dead.
“Sickpuppyz pit bull kennels”, Marriotts dog breeding operation, had its Facebook page removed after a firestorm of criticism for posting disturbing pictures of pit bulls.
Marriott also was charged with felony marijuana possession in excess of one pound, and aggravated harassment for threatening a local animal shelter employee, troopers said, who had initially alerted authorities to the animal abuse.
The dog seizure was followed by three fires at the barn within one month. On February 9, the third fire completely destroyed the barn. New York State Police investigators deemed the fires “suspicious” and they are under investigation for arson.
The faces of the Loyal White Knights in New York State
The New York Realm of the Loyal White Knights of the KKK are comprised of 19 members statewide in total, according to internal LWK records. Ten of those members are from Gloversville, Fulton County. All of these, with the exception of Grand Dragon of New York Doug Munker attended school or grew up together in surrounding communities before joining the LWK together over a period of several months in early 2017.
Below are their photographs and hometowns (Source: Loyal White Knights of the Ku Klux Klan internal national membership roster as of March 2018)
LWK member Brian,
Local officials in Fulton County were reluctant to talk about the white supremacist gang that had operated freely for over a year in the county.
“As far as we can tell, they are a small group of kids, wannabes running around in the woods with their Halloween costumes on,” said Fulton County Sheriff Giardino in a telephone interview this week. “They are a small group of friends who are racists to the core, but I didn’t have any concerns then or do now they pose a threat to the community.”
“We are a Christian organization,” Coty said in October. “It’s all there in the Bible. We [whites] were made in God’s image.”
“We’re not a bunch of punks,” Grand Dragon Munker said.
There is a new sheriff in town
In early March, Nate Coty and his wife, Joleen moved for the first time in their lives out of Fulton County.
But they have not given up their devotion to the hateful ideology that wreaked havoc in upstate New York for more than a year.
The couple moved into a rented house in the tiny unincorporated rural North Carolina hamlet of Providence, North Carolina, population 2,269, just south of the Virginia border. Not coincidentally, it is just up the road from the national headquarters of the Loyal White Knights of the Ku Klux Klan.
It did not take long for the gang from Gloversville, New York to catch the attention of local Caswell County law enforcement authorities. On the night of April 5, 2018, Nate Cody and Joseph Marriott were charged with arrested and charged with violating local littering ordinances for throwing Loyal White Knights hate literature onto the front lawns of homes on main street in Providence, North Carolina. “You guys haven’t even been here a month and you are already doing this stuff? the local county sheriff, who is black, asked the two out-of-state Klansmen, shaking his head.
LWK leafleting in Minnesota
Tucked away in the Minnesota Iron Range the small towns of of Virginia, Embarrass and Britt woke the Monday morning of Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday last January to racist leaflets thrown onto the lawns of hundreds of homes.
The LWK have no members in Minnesota, according to their internal records and other Loyal White Knight members. There was previously a single person in Minneapolis, but he appears to have left the group, according to updated membership lists from February 2018.
The leafletting was the work of a single Illinois man, according to KKK documents.
Mike Hopkins, of the Chicago suburb of Merrionette, Illinois, crossed the state line in the middle of the night to distribute racist, anti-Semitic, and anti-gay leaflets in the rural Minnesota communities
Hopkins then proudly boasted about the community angst it caused and the media attention he was responsible for. On their live message forum, LWK Imperial Wizard Barker congratulated Hopkins for the Minnesota leafletting campaign.
Local residents reacted with outrage at the Loyal White Knights flyer drop denouncing the civil rights icon as a “communist” and a “pervert.”
“We don’t want this kind of crap in our community,” the Mayor of Virginia, Minnesota, Larry Cuffe Jr., told the Minneapolis Star Tribune. “It’s racism, is what it is. It’s despicable. It’s a cancer that will eat away the very fabric of your community if you allow this to continue.”
A church vigil was held on Martin Luther King Jr. Day in protest. “Many people have received them so far,” said Joseph Adams, a resident of another small Minnesota town, which was also targeted by LWK hate literature. “I don’t know if I want to be here much longer.”
“For us moving forward, it’s just really important that we are speaking up, that we’re not remaining silent, and that we are saying ‘this is not acceptable in Virginia, Minnesota,’” said Nevada Littlewolf, a Virginia city councilor.
“The KKK Wants You!” blares the headline of the June 2017 Loyalist White Knights recruitment flier over an image of a hooded Klansman pointing at the reader. The leaflets were left on front lawns near Houston and listed the Loyal White Knights “hotline” number and website. Local media said that “police were trying to figure out who left the bags.”
The same leaflet, placed inside Ziploc baggies weighed down with bullet casings, were thrown on the properties of residents of Abilene, Texas, many of whom were black, last November 26.
“It’s just another hate group trying to divide the country more than it already is,” said Randel West of the Hampton Hills neighborhood in Abilene where the leaflets were thrown. “We don’t have any room for that kind of behavior in Abilene. Abilene’s a good Christian community. We should act like it and come together like Americans and not ethnic groups.”
“Police are trying to figure out who left the bags,” reported Abilene TV and newspapers as their top story of the day on that Thanksgiving weekend.
The answer is Billy Batts, 36, at the time a resident of Abilene.
“SO FAR THIS,” wrote Billy Batts to other members in their private chatroom live discussion board, attaching a link to the top-story-of-the-day Abilene television news report. “BUT WE ARE ALL OVER THE TV.”
Batts is the Grand Dragon for the Loyal White Knights of the Ku Klux Klan for Texas, but that isn’t his real name.
William Robert Lewey, 36, has good reasons to use a fake name. At the time, he was on the lam from criminal warrants for beating people up and other charges issued by both the State of Texas and the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, where he grew up in the small, hardscrabble working class city of Revere, just north of Boston.
Lewey aka Batts was wanted in Texas on October 23, 2015 charges of “assault and battery/bodily injury” for assaulting his then girlfriend and in Massachusetts on January 2013 charges for “assault and battery, assault and battery on a 60+/disabled person, and attempting to commit a crime.”
On November 18 2015, less than a month after the Texas charges were filed and warrants for his arrest issued, Lewey was arrested again in Massachusetts for “shoplifting, making a threat to commit a crime, and illegal possession of a knife.”
Earlier, in 2010, Lewey was arrested for violating a “domestic abuse prevention order, assault & battery upon a police officer, resisting arrest, and assault & battery” also in Massachusetts.
Lewey has even managed to get himself listed on websites devoted to warn people about potentially bad dates.
In June of 2017, Lewey fled San Antonio from the criminal charges of assaulting his then girlfriend to Abilene Texas, where he and several other Loyal White Knights members distributed recruitment leaflets near Abilene reading “Help, save our race. Join the best or die like the rest.”
In July of 2017, Lewey travelled to Charlottesville, Virginia to attend the Klan led rally ostensibly to oppose removing Confederate statues.
Batts/Lewes was accompanied on the November 2017 “Night Ride” in Abilene by another LWK Klan member, Timothy Delray Guynes AKA Dell J Guynes, 32, of Ballinger and Snyder, Texas, who also has outstanding warrants in Scurry County, Texas for “assault causing bodily injury-family violence.”
Between the different criminal charges filed against Lewey, he was promoted within the Loyal White Knights from an Exalted Cyclops–or local leader, to the position of Grand Dragon–or state leader–for Texas.
On January 17 of this year Lewey was arrested in Abilene by the Taylor County sheriff’s office on the outstanding Texas warrants issued by Bexar County and transferred to that county where he plead guilty to beating up his girlfriend.
Lewey was sentenced to four months, but served only 55 days in the County lockup, and was released March 26–11 days ago. Lewey/Batts boarded a Greyhound bus and travelled to the Loyal White Knights headquarters in Caswell County, North Carolina, and has reassumed his role as a leader of the Klan faction. This upcoming weekend of April 6-8, Lewey will travel to the Eastern Shore of Maryland to meet up with other Klan members arriving from a dozen states to attend a cross burning and “naturalization”–or formal induction–ceremony for new members of the LWK that will be held on one member’s property near the small town of Federalsburg.
Nathan Swahn, 32, of Pittsford, Vermont is the sole member of the Loyal White Knights in that state. Swahn has been an active member of the Loyal White Knights, distributing LWK recruitment flyers in that state and across Lake Champagne in upstate New York.
In March of 2016, Swahn, 31, was arrested in Rutland, Vermont after he tried to steal a running car parked in the drive way of a Rutland Vermont man’s home.
Leonard J. Montuori told police he looked out the kitchen window, saw Swahn climbing into this girlfriend’s car, grabbed his gun and called his dog and went out to confront Mr. Swahn, who proceeded to run into the woods.
Troopers found Swahn standing in a water-filled ditch across from Mr. Montuori’s house. Swahn told police he was hearing voices, that his clothing was changing colors and that animals were speaking to him, according to court affidavits.
The previous week, Swahn was arrested in Rutland and charged with resisting arrest and unlawful mischief, and was released from jail on $5,000 bail. Swahn pleaded innocent to three new three new charges of operating a vehicle without the owners consent, giving false information to a police officer, and violating his conditions of release.
After his second arrest in one week, he was held on 50,000 bail.
James Seay aka James “JT” Moore: Nazi, Christian Preacher, Klan leader, unemployed
Over the Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday weekend last January, LWK Virginia Grand Dragon and Imperial Kludd—or national Christian pastor—James Seay aka James “JT” Moore dropped the fliers in Fredericksburg Virginia.
That and other coordinated Virginia flier drops resulted in hundreds of outraged community members holding public demonstrations in several Virginia communities, elected officials and federal law enforcement launching investigations, and multi-faith church gatherings in support of tolerance and racial and religious unity.
“The only one I participated in was in Fredericksburg for MLK day. The rest of the credit goes to Kevin and Calvin,” wrote Seay on the LWK Internet discussion board.
The 26-year old unemployed college dropout holds the position of the Klan factions’ Christian “pastor”—a title he bought off the Internet. From his cyberspace pulpit, Seay espouses an interpretation of the Christian bible that declares all non-whites are “mud people” and Jews are “spawns of Satan”.
Mr. Seay has his own complicated biography. For starters, his name is not James Moore, which is a pseudonym for James “J.T.” Seay. Mr. Seay lives outside Richmond near the airport in Sandston, Henrico County, Virginia.
In November 2016, Seay resigned from the LWK and joined the National Socialist Movement, the largest neo-Nazi organization in the U.S.
LWK Imperial Wizard Barker also was a member of the NSM in 2004 and 2005, before he joined one in a series of other Klan factions. Mr. Barker holds the distinction of having been expelled from fours other KKK factions before he founded his own Loyal White Knights in December 2011.
In an interview with Fox news radio host Allen Combs, using the name James Moore, Seay claimed that he is married and an ordained minister with “two beautiful little girls,” and works as a graphic designer. “I am the national chaplain for the Loyal White Knights,” he said.
While he bills himself as all the above, Moore is, in fact, none of these things. He is not married, he bought his pastor ordination certificate over the Internet, and he does not have “two beautiful little girls.” His girlfriend, who is the first cousin of Amanda Barker, the wife of LWK head Chris Barker, does have other children fathered by men other than Seay.
Mr. Seay has lived in his aunt’s basement in Sandston, Virginia near the Richmond airport rent-free for a number of years.
Daniel Zimmerman, an ordained Southern Baptist minister in Virginia who once worked together with Seay in another Klan said that Mr. Seay was expelled from the Knights of the Southern Cross of the KKK for recommending his then girlfriend as a Klan member, but failing to mention that she was a practicing bisexual and, in addition, her lover at the time was black–both categories strictly frowned upon by the Ku Klux Klan. “He told me straight out ‘I was hoping this would change her’,” Zimmerman said. “We banished them both in June of 2011.”
Seay claims his main purpose is to “spread the message of the God-fearing whites of America, put Bibles back in schools, have 100 percent pure Americanism represented in politics, and restore the Constitution back to its original form.”
Seay briefly left the Loyal White Knights in November 2016 to join the largest Nazi party in the U.S., the National Socialist Movement (NSM), and then created an online “Christian church” which was not successful before returning to the LWK in March 2017
Moore’s claim that he is an ordained minister “means nothing. It is something he printed out over the computer,” Zimmerman said. According to Moore himself, he received his Christian minister credentials from the neo-Nazi Church of Jesus Christ–Aryan Nations, a KKK group that adheres to an obscure interpretation of the bible created by white supremacists called ‘Christian Identity’.
“He is not an ordained minister under Virginia law. He just sent his money in over the Internet and they mailed him a certificate of ordination,” said Zimmerman in an interview.
“The Ku Klux Klan are un-apologetically committed to the interest and values of the White race!” fliers dropped by James Moore in southeast Virginia read. “We are determined to maintain and enrich our cultural and racial heritage! We are growing fast and strong because we have NEVER nor will we ever compromise the truth!”
James Seay has been responsible for dozens of separate nocturnal flier drops throughout Virginia.
In February, community meetings were held throughout Virginia in direct response to local outrage against a leaflet distribution campaign which targeted the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday weekend. The community meetings drew hundreds of participants to town halls and churches across the state. and featured speakers from numerous churches, the FBI, local law enforcement, and elected officials.
The meeting came after at least 10 Leesburg residents said they discovered handouts in plastics bags affixed to their doorsteps from the Loyal White Knights of the Klu Klux Klan. One of the fliers referred to Martin Luther King Jr. as a “Communist Alcoholic Pervert.”
On Monday, February 5, residents packed a public meeting at Shiloh Baptist Church in Fredericksburg, Virginia sponsored by the NAACP that featured the Mayor, the sheriff, and representatives from the FBI, as well as other community leaders to address angry citizens.
The following weekend, more than a hundred people gathered at an interfaith service hosted by First Mount of Olive Baptist Church in Leesburg, Virginia.
“The first words [in the flyer] are that Dr. King was a communist pervert,” said Gaye Adegbalola. “We did not like that, but what can we do in a peaceful manner? For him to be called names like that, we will not take it.”
In Spotsylvania County, Gregory Wigglesworth, a retired Fredericksburg police lieutenant, said he and at least one neighbor got the flyers thrown on their lawns. “We really need to pray for love, that love will take hold of what’s going on in this country now,” said Wigglesworth, who is black. “Because I feel there’s a very negative … relationship brewing among members of our community, members of our country. We can’t continue this rhetoric and have a healthy society.”
“Officers are aware and collecting the flyers as we find out about them,” Sarah Kirkpatrick of the Fredericksburg, Virginia police said. “It looks like this is something that’s going on in other parts of the country.”
A phone number on one flyer listed the LWK 1-800 number. When dialed, a recording Barker’s voice calling for murdering Mexicans along the border and “leaving their bodies to rot.”
Similar LWK Klan material delivered in bags turned up in Gore, Front Royal and Strasburg last September. More than two dozen such Ziploc baggies were delivered to homes in Winchester, Virginia on Halloween night. Halloween is another tradition Loyal White Nights date to spread hate literture.
Residents began noticing the latest plastic bags containing hateful fliers the day after Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday in January in Washington, Virginia. They carried bird seed – and a flyer promoting racist and anti-Semitic messages.
In November, the LWK blanketed two Shenendoah Valley small towns with leaflets.
“While the Klan have self-identified as Christian, the teachings of love of God and humanity that are generally central in Christianity are sadly lacking from the Klan,” the rev. Paul Oakley of the Unitarian Universalist Federation of Waynesboro addressed a Waynesboro City Council meeting in November in response to another leaflet drop in the town. He called the Loyal White Knights “a white-supremacist lie intended to rile up hatred. There is no excuse for this lie. A call to the number supplied on the recruitment flyers reached a highly anti-Semitic message. And anti-Semitism was integral to the cancerous white supremacism of Nazism that we expended great national resources to defeat on the battlefield in World War II. Nevertheless, the evil of anti-Semitism is still very much present, requiring us to continue to struggle against it.”
But law enforcement agencies, who must balance addressing citizen outrage and complaints which flood the local police and sheriff offices each time a leaflet “night ride” is conducted, know that the first amendment of the U.S. constitution usually protects such activity, and there is very little they can do legally to stop it.
“We have to abide by the First Amendment. The First Amendment has priority,” said FBI Special Agent Steve Hall at the Fredericksburg public meeting. “We can all agree that the flyer was distasteful, but it was no threat.”
Staunton, Virginia Mayor Carolyn W. Dull, where the LWK has also distributed leaflets at night, said in November, after a Halloween weekend leaflet drop, that “hate is not welcome here” and the Loyal White Knights leaflets were “contradictory to the welcoming and inclusive” message her city is intent on sending,” but “the constitutional right of every American to speak their mind works both ways.”
“We can’t regulate the speech, even as despicable as the speech may be to us personally. However, putting handbills on vehicles like this would be a class four misdemeanor. It’s a violation of a local city ordinance to place any handbill on any vehicle in the city,” said Staunton Police Public Information Officer Katie Shifflett.
Both Waynesboro and Staunton have city ordinances regulating the placement of flyers on vehicles.
Staunton Mayor Carolyn Dull released a statement saying, “I believe I speak for the vast majority of Stauntonians when I say that hate is not welcome here. Let’s continue our progress together and uphold our city as a friendly place where every person can live freely and thrive.”
The disproportionate public reaction to the Klan efforts to incite community anger stands in stark contrast to the numbers of members in the Loyal White Knights of the KKK itself.
The Loyal White Knights have 14 members in all of Virginia, and not a single member in Fredericksburg or Louden County.
In early July, 2017, prior to the LWK holding a demonstration “in support of confederate monuments” in Charlottesville, Virginia, the LWK rented a picnic spot at a local Waynesboro public park. The rental of the park barbecue space drew the attention of local residents who walk their dogs in Corner Springs Park who were displeased when armed robed Klansmen arrived to eat prior to their scheduled demonstration in Charlottesville that day.
Harry King was walking his dog in Coyner state park Saturday morning July 8 when he was startled to see pickup trucks arrive with “35-40” and armed robed Klansmen and other men dressed in grey uniforms wearing iron crosses get out. “They were carrying guns and long sword-like knives and asking where they could find robes,” according to the Shenandoah Valley News leader. Soon “a man with a large pad lock with a bandana wrapped around it” approached King and “looked like he was ready to swing it.”
The pavilion was rented out by the Waynesboro Parks and Recreation Department in the name of LWK Christian pastor James Seay, who said he planned to hold a “family reunion,” according to the permit.
“For African Americans, the Klan is our ISIS,” said Phillip Thompson, president of the Loudoun County branch of the NAACP. “Why won’t our elected officials and law enforcement step up and give these people as much energy as they’re trying to give us?” he asked.
While Loyal White Knights Imperial Wizard Chris Barker was locked up in early 2017 on $200,000 pre-trial bond of charged with “assault with a deadly weapon with Intent to kill”–North Carolina’s equivalent to attempted murder–the Klan faction appointed a temporary Imperial Wizard.
Joseph Eugene Meredith, 54, of Statesville and Harmony, North Carolina seemed a curious choice to replace Barker as the public face of the Klan group.
Meredith is a convicted rapist and child molester with an extensive criminal record dating back 20 years, according to court and law enforcement records.
His appointment seemed more likely to undermine attempts by the Loyal White Knights to reposition their public image into one of a law-abiding, Christian fraternal organization.
Joesph Meredith of North Carolina has been arrested more than 40 times. Meredith’s criminal record includes convictions for first degree rape, indecent liberties with a child, assault on a child under 12, assaulting a female, defrauding an innkeeper, worthless checks, failure to return rental property, larceny, communicating threats, burglary, weapons charges, assault, discharging a firearm into an occupied dwelling, and more than 20 alcohol related arrests, among a plethora of other criminal charges.
Meredith’s alcohol related charges are so extensive North Carolina designated him an “habitual
offender.” North Carolina law enforcement sources say the courts ordered his vehicle equipped through at least the
year 2022 with an “Interlock” device that requires the driver to blow into a “breathalyzer “to prove he has not consumed alcohol in order for the car’s engine to start.
William Ernest Hagen: KKK Grand Dragon, dog lover, member of Nazi Low Riders white supremacist prison gang, former heroin addict, current resident of California maximum security prison system segregation unit, likes knives, devout Christian
William Ernest Hagen,of Orange, California, the state Grand Dragon for the Loyal White Knights of the Ku Klux Klan, has had a dysfunctional relationship with sharp metal instruments for decades.
Hagen has been criminally charged with stabbing people at least 4 times and has been stabbed himself at least twice.
In one 2015 incident, Hagen stabbed a Mexican-American he spotted walking by his truck parked at a California Denny’s restaurant while Hagen and his girlfriend were eating dinner.
He was charged in that 2015 incident with “assault with a deadly weapon other than a firearm”; “criminal threats”; and “personally using a deadly weapon; additional term of one year.”
Hagen was out on $500,000 bail awaiting trial on those charges when he was arrested in North Carolina on December 3, 2016 on charges of “one count Felony Assault with a Deadly Weapon with Intent to Kill Inflicting Serious Injury”–the North Carolina equivalent of attempted murder- for stabbing another Klansman in the pre-dawn hours prior to a Ku Klux Klan organized “Trump Victory Rally”.
Documents from the Danville Regional Medical Center say Dillon was treated for”multiple stab wounds to the interior chest.”
During that incident, Hagen stabbed a fellow Klansman Richard Dillon, 48, of Hammond, Indiana in the dining room of the home of Imperial Wizard Chris Barker, but Dillon managed to escape the house and drove the 27 miles to Danville, Virginia Regional Medical Center.
“Blood was just gushing out, pouring out of my chest. I couldn’t stop the bleeding. I held a towel pressed against my chest and it just soaked in blood. My truck floor is caked in blood,” Dillon said in an interview two days after he was assaulted.
Dillon said the knife Hagen attacked him with was “a 5 or 6 inch unfoldable knife with a black titanium blade. He always had that knife strapped to his boot legs.”
Hagen, still out on the half million dollar California pre-trial bond, was arrested later that same day and held in Caswell County, North Carolina jail on an additional $350,000.00 secured bond.
He posted that bail two weeks later and was released from North Carolina custody.
Now free on two pre-trial bonds for stabbings in two states totaling $850,000, neither North Carolina or California were aware of the identical charges current in the other state until informed by this reporter.
Prior to these stabbings, Hagen had been arrested twice before for stabbing still more people in California. He was arrested and sent to prison in the 1990’s for stabbing one man, and arrested again in California in 2001 for another stabbing.
Hagen himself was badly stabbed while an inmate in California’s maximum security Pelican Bay state prison in the 1990’s.
On April 7, 2017, Hagen was convicted by a California jury on three felony charges related to the 2015 stabbing with a boxcutter of the Mexican-American man in the Denny’s parking lot. During the incident, he threatened to organize his KKK to kill the man.
Hagen was sentenced to 8 1/2 years in a California prison, where he currently resides.
“IW Chris (Barker) only tried to break up the fight and Grand Dragon Will (Hagen) was only trying to defend himself, but the local Jew cops refused to take anyone’s statements,”reads a December 19, 2016 message from Matt, the LWK “Kleagle”–or recruiter– in British Columbia, Canada. “You’d think that people would get their facts straight before taking the Jew media as gospel!!! White Power from B.C. Canada–KLASP!”
In the hours after the December 2016 North Carolina stabbing, Hagen placed calls to fellow Klan members who had resigned in disgust from the Klan organization. “I don’t know who is telling you what and who is getting in your ear, but you guys need to come back to the (KKK) because this whole thing with Richard just blew up like a bomb,” Hagen said in a call to one Grand Dragon–or state leader–of the Loyal White Knights. “You know with my fractured wrists and bruised ribs—I mean my face I have two black eyes a slice in my forehead and a broken nose.” Hagen thinks he has hung up the phone and turns to Christopher Barker in the background at the Days Inn motel room in Yanceyville, North Carolina where they had fled from the scene of the stabbing at Barker’s house to regroup, both still drunk. Hagen says to Barker “Damn! This is bad!”
THE NAZI LOW RIDERS PRISON GANG
It was in the 1990’s at the maximum security California Correctional Facility at Pelican Bay that Hagen, according to interviews, became affiliated with white supremacist politics. Pelican Bay is one of the most race segregated and violent prisons in America. Hagen was serving time for stabbing someone else at the time.
Hagen has been arrested and imprisoned on numerous charges in California.
Hagen has a 4 inch long by 4 inch deep prison inked tattoo with the letters “NLR” on his stomach, signifying his membership in the white supremacist “Nazi Low Riders” prison gang. Part of the “R” on that tattoo is incomplete–interupted by the California maximum security prison authorities, according to sources in the KKK close to Hagen, at Pelican Bay where prison-inked tattoos are against the rules.
Underneath that Nazi Low Riders tattoo is an ugly jagged scar that runs across Hagen’s midsection from being stabbed by a member of a Mexican prison gang in an altercation while an inmate at Pelican Bay.
“Hagen has NLR tattooed on his stomach right over a huge gash from where he was was stabbed by a Mexican in Pelican Bay. That is when he earned his bones for the NLR–when you do something violent to gain membership,” said a former Loyal White Knights Klansman who was close to Hagen in California. Hagen talking about Pelican Bay and all the stabbings was a real turning point for me. He was very nonchalant, very prison-esqe. It was a big eye opener for me. I thought ‘what kind of people am I getting involved with here?’”
“Hagen gets really involved in confrontation. I remember when we went to a Kinko’s to get some Klan leaflets printed. The woman at Kinko’s said ‘I’m not going to print that!’ Hagen wouldn’t let it go. He went back to the Kinko’s and threatened her,” said one former Klan member who worked closely with Hagen in California. “He asked me and another California Klan member to show up in court with him in Orange County dressed in our Klan uniforms. He hadn’t even gone to trial yet and he thought having a couple of guys dressed up in Klan outfits to accompany him to court was going to do him any good in front of the judge? WTF?”
The last time William Hagen was released from prison he refused to cooperate with California authorities and provide information on the Nazi Low Riders white supremacist prison gang. In real life, what that means is if you ever go back into the California prison system you are automatically placed into segregation as an identified prison gang member.
When he was jailed after his April 2017 conviction, Hagen was immediately confined in the “shoe” in Orange County California Men’s Central Prison because of his white supremacist affiliations while awaiting sentencing. Now in a maximum security state prison, Hagen is allowed no contact with other inmates, and is fed in his cell where he is kept 23 hours a day. One a hour a day he allowed out to exercise alone in a reinforced chain link cage equipped with a basically hoop in a separate section of the prison yard.
If he is let back into general population he will immediately be identified by his fellow inmates as having snitched on his his gang members.
That means William Hagen’s near future, in 2017, is not destined to be bright.
HAGEN AND THE KLAN
“See? You’ve got a bad image left over from the old KKK who dragged niggers around the parking lot from the back of a truck with a rope around their neck. The new Klan, we’re a non-violent pro-white civil rights movement. The only one in America,” Hagen told an interviewer in July 2015.
Hagen said then he does not like “the Jews, the Blacks, the Mexicans, the Orientals, the Catholics. This is a Christian nation. Everybody who is not white and Christian, I do not like.”
In a February 2016 article by this reporter, William Ernest Hagen, who uses the alias Will Quigg, objected to a reporter writing that his name was what it is–William Hagen.
“My name is Will Quigg. I don’t know where you came up with my name being William ‘Billy’ Hagen. That’s news to me,” said William ‘Billy Hagen’ who claimed he was not William ‘Billy’ Hagen in a conversation from his home in Anaheim, California. Will Quigg aka Billy Hagen was returning a reporters telephone call.
An earlier call to Hagen to the same telephone number had the same man saying on the voice message: “This is Bill Hagen, the west coast Grand Dragon and King Kleagle of the Loyal White Knights of the KKK.”
When told that he himself had identified himself as Billy Hagen in previous conversations, had been identified by several other members of his Klan organization as Billy Hagen, had registered under that name on a cross-country airplane flight from Los Angeles to Greensboro, North Carolina to attend a high-profile Klan demonstration in support of the confederate flag and the white youth who killed nine black church parishioners in South Carolina, and was arrested earlier that month in California and booked under the name William Ernest Hagen, Hagen wanted to change the subject.
Hagen then offered that Hagen was “my roommate’s name. I use his name when I do things in public.”
“To set the record straight we went to South Carolina to support the Confederate flag, not the stupid little kid Dylan Roof. We might have made some comments before we had all the information regarding Dylan Roof but we did not support him,” he said.
That assertion stands in contrast to the audio message on the Loyal White Knights answering machine with Imperial Wizard Chris Barker’s–Hagen’s co-defendant in the North Carolina stabbing– voice which said: “The KKK would like to say Hail Victory to the young warrior Dylan S. Roof, who did what the bible told him to do, an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth. They have spilled our blood for too long. It is about time someone spilled theirs.”
Several of Hagen’s childhood friends say that the violent white racist they now hear of does not jibe with their own recollections of Mr. Hagen. ” I went to high school with him, and he has sporadically kept in touch with me throughout the years… I’m having a very hard time reconciling some of what’s being said about him to the guy who cares for his now passed away Mother’s blind Chihuahua as if it were an infant. He buys her sweaters and literally carries her outside when she needs to go potty,” wrote one school friend to this reporter recently.
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Here are links to the first two stories in this three part series:
Here are links to other stories on the Loyal White Knights of the Ku Klux Klan:
(This was part three in a three part series of articles profiling the Loyal White Knights of the Ku Klux Klan. The 18 month investigation was not sponsored or supported by any organization or media outlet. I make my living as a freelance investigative journalist. Quality investigative journalist is expensive. It requires resources, is time consuming, and important. If you found this and my other investigations worthwhile, and are inclined or able to support this and future investigations, donations of any amount are welcome, needed, and appreciated. There is a Pay Pal button at the top right of the page.)