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Authorities say hate motivated Kansas shooting



OVERLAND PARK, Kan. (AP) -- Never one to keep his hatred to himself, Frazier Glenn Cross for decades sought out any soapbox to espouse his white-supremacist beliefs, twice running for federal office with campaigns steeped in anti-Semitism.

Yet there's scant evidence the Army veteran and retired trucker with Ku Klux Klan links ever resorted to violence before Sunday, when authorities say Cross opened fire with a shotgun and pistol outside a Jewish community center and retirement complex near Kansas City. None of the three people killed turned out to be Jewish.

The 73-year-old, who shouted a Nazi slogan at television cameras when arrested minutes later, is jailed awaiting charges that investigators said could come as early as Tuesday. At some point, a federal grand jury is expected to review the slayings, which investigators now deem a hate crime.

"We want to express our condolences to the families of these poor souls who happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time and had the unfortunate experience of a first-hand encounter with evil," U.S. Attorney Barry Grissom said.

The FBI and police have not offered any public explanation for what triggered Sunday's deadly outburst in Overland Park on the eve of the Jewish festival of Passover. While the FBI and other law-enforcement agencies were familiar with Cross, Sunday's gunfire was "very random," the FBI's Michael Kaste said.

"We don't really see how this could have been prevented. There's at least no obvious answer," said Mark Potok, a senior fellow at the Alabama-based Southern Poverty Law Center, which tracks hate groups and had a considerable dossier on Cross. "He is one of the more frightening characters out there, no question about that."

A Johnson County jail official reached Monday by The Associated Press refused to make Cross available and referred inquiries to his attorneys and Overland Park police. The Kansas Star reported that Cross had been assigned two federal public defenders.

Knocks by an Associated Press reporter went unanswered Monday at Cross' small, single-story home bordered on three sides with barbed-wire fences near the southwest Missouri town of Aurora, some 180 miles south of Overland Park. Parked outside was a red Chevrolet bearing two Confederate flag stickers.

The Southern Poverty Law Center said Cross, who also went by the name Frazier Glenn Miller, has been immersed in the white-supremacist movement most of his life. During the early 1980s, Cross was "one of the more notorious white supremacists in the U.S.," according to the Anti-Defamation League.

He founded the Carolina Knights of the Ku Klux Klan and served as its "grand dragon" before launching the supremacist White Patriot Party, the law center said.

By 1987, he was the target of a nationwide manhunt for violating terms of his bond while appealing a North Carolina conviction for operating a paramilitary camp. Federal agents tracked him down along with three other men to a rural Missouri mobile home stocked with hand grenades, automatic weapons and thousands of bullets.

A federal grand jury indicted Cross on weapons charges and accused him of plotting robberies and the assassination of the law center's founder, Morris Dees. He then served three years in federal prison. As part of a plea bargain, Miller testified against other Klan leaders in a 1988 sedition trial.

Cross, using the name Frazier Miller, ran for the U.S. House in 2006 and the U.S. Senate in 2010, each time espousing a white-power platform.

During his Senate run as a registered write-in candidate, Cross' effort to air anti-Semitic ads was scuttled by the Federal Communications Commission, which concluded Cross was not a "bona fide" candidate entitled to mandatory access to the state's broadcast airwaves. The ruling allowed Missouri broadcasters to reject Miller's ads, such as one that urged white people to "unite" and "take our country back." It also criticized immigrants and minorities.

At the time, Miller complained in a written statement that the FCC action "deliberately silenced my political campaign" and made it "absolutely impossible for me to get elected." He responded to an AP telephone interview request with anti-Semitic slurs and profanity.

Violence ultimately proved fatal to his son. Jesse Miller was 30 and wielding a shotgun in 2008 when he was shot and killed by a police officer he wounded in southwestern Missouri's Marionville. The confrontation happened moments after Jesse Miller had gunned down a passer-by who stopped to help him after a car crash.

It was never clear what motivated the younger Miller to resort to gunfire.

In Cross' southwestern Missouri hometown Monday, most locals approached by the AP waved off the opportunity to discuss the man authorities suspect killed 69-year-old William Lewis Corporon, a physician, and his 14-year-old grandson, Reat Griffin Underwood, outside the Jewish Community Center of Greater Kansas City.

Both were Christians killed moments before Terri LaManno - a 53-year-old Catholic occupational therapist and mother of two - was gunned down outside a Jewish retirement complex where she was visiting her mother.

"It was bound to happen. You can't be that deep into what he was into and not expect something to happen," said Steven Roberts, who lives in Aurora, a roughly three-hour drive from Overland Park.

Cross was well-dressed and educated, Roberts said, but "just had a deep hatred for other races."

In nearby Marionville, population 2,200, Mayor Dan Clevenger said Cross often distributed racist pamphlets around town.

"He's gone overboard," Clevenger said. "He's way too carried away with his ideas."

---

Associated Press Writer Bill Draper contributed to this story in Overland Park, Kan.


3 Dead In Shootings At Jewish Sites In Kansas City Area

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fload46d April 14 2014 at 6:59 PM

Another sicko kook off the streets.

Flag Reply +5 rate up
1 reply
dapalmlv fload46d April 14 2014 at 7:32 PM

Time for the FBI to put together Strike Teams to take out these extreme groups wether they be white hate groups or black gangs in the inner cities they all have to go and we can do that under the Rico Act.

Flag Reply +1 rate up
Dan April 14 2014 at 2:02 PM

What a COWARD!

Flag Reply +2 rate up
ilenedan2 April 14 2014 at 10:53 PM

He never resorted to violence before? Is AOL kidding? You mean plotting to murder someone while running a paramilitary camp stocked with grenades and machine guns, and serving years in jail for that doesn't count? Define violence. Is AOL saying it's only resorting to violence if the person succeeds in murdering others, not just stockpiling weapons and planning to use them to kill specific people?

Flag Reply +7 rate up
3 replies
goodgrief61945 April 14 2014 at 2:05 PM

Why wasn't he in jail for the 1987 incident?

Flag Reply +1 rate up
Hello Diane April 14 2014 at 2:06 PM

So very sad and so very senseless. We can say he was evil, we can say he was deranged, but nothing brings back those innocent lives. Now I ask that we each look at the hatred we are spewing on here! I do believe in capital punishment and it is probably a candidate for it in this case, but I feel that spewing the nastiness some on here are lowers us to his level. I don't want to be there. I want the justice system to do it's work. Of course I don't want to house or clothe him anymore than the next and we are stuck with that, but lets not go where he went. We need to be better than that to show others the way.

Flag Reply +3 rate up
dapalmlv April 14 2014 at 7:23 PM

This guy deserves the same treatment that Joe Pesci and his brother got from the mob in the movie Casino! Check it out see if you agree with me!

Flag Reply +2 rate up
bd2thebone April 14 2014 at 10:49 PM

"We don't really see how this could have been prevented. There's at least no obvious answer," said Mark Potok, a senior fellow at the Alabama-based Southern Poverty Law Center, which tracks hate groups and had a considerable dossier on Cross. "He is one of the more frightening characters out there, no question about that.
Hmmmm...... Maybe he should have been locked up. Wouldn't this have prevented it?

Flag Reply +7 rate up
2 replies
janicejharvey bd2thebone April 14 2014 at 10:57 PM

Before now, he didn't do anything illegal. There are a lot of white supremacists out there who go their entire lives only shouting racist ideals and never acting upon them. Our first amendment protects our rights to free speech. There was no reason to lock him up, any more than there is any reason to lock up the members of the Westboro Baptist church, or of Pro-choice/Pro-life speakers. Speaking your thoughts is not illegal. It has never been illegal. It should never be illegal.

Flag Reply +3 rate up
2 replies
ilenedan2 janicejharvey April 14 2014 at 11:09 PM

You mean he didn't do anything illegal before other than the crimes including PLANNING A MURDER that he was previously jailed for? Or did you not bother to read the article to see that indeed he did do something before now. He planned to kill someone, stockpiled weapons to do it with, ran a paramilitary camp filled with machine guns and grenades, etc., etc. etc.

Flag +3 rate up
orion15stars janicejharvey April 14 2014 at 11:25 PM

I notice all your referenced groups involve violent hate speech and violent behavior, i.e. bombing abortion/US Constitution guaranteed legal pro-choice clinics, murdering at least one doctor in a church while he was attending church services, etc. Your post screams its author is highly OK with all of that lethal bigoted hate speech and violence. Your groups demand to stomp on others constitutionally guaranteed rights, and maliciously snuff out their already birthed lives, and then scream, "I don't answer to man. I answer to god and Jesus." Neither of which you nor anyone else can physically proved ever existed. You demand theocracy rule the US, as long as you're part of the theocrats doing all that tyrannical theocratic ruling. What is the difference in that behavior compared to any other fanatical theocrat of any religion? The correct is, "None." I don't have any tolerance for that behavior.

How can people actually be pro-life, and demand the murder or murder people in a church or abortion clinic with unarmed already birthed people inside? A fetus isn't a baby or "unborn" child". There are no unborn children. Birth has to take place first for the birthed result to be legitimately known as a baby, infant or child.

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orion15stars bd2thebone April 14 2014 at 11:05 PM

Unfortunately, that isn't the way criminal law reads.

Flag Reply 0 rate up
Prowl April 14 2014 at 2:10 PM

Sad that all he could see was hatred. So much so that he just had to killed. He probably had such an unimportant life, that killing made him feel powerful, yet all it made him was a murderous fool

Flag Reply +3 rate up
bryansrp April 14 2014 at 2:10 PM

Just shoot him and put him out of our misery.

Flag Reply +3 rate up
Applez64 April 14 2014 at 10:41 PM

As the song goes "You have to be carefully taught!" Hate is passed on from one generation to the next. We need to break that chain.

Flag Reply +2 rate up
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