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Frazier Glenn Cross, suspect in Kansas shootings, faces murder charges



OVERLAND PARK, Kan. (AP) -- Kansas prosecutors filed state-level murder charges Tuesday against the white supremacist accused in shootings that left three people dead at two Jewish community sites in suburban Kansas City.

Frazier Glenn Cross has been charged with one count of capital murder for the deaths of 14-year-old boy and his grandfather outside the Jewish Community Center of Greater Kansas City, Johnson County District Attorney Steve Howe said at a news conference. Cross also faces one count of first-degree, premeditated murder for the death of a woman who was gunned down while visiting her mother at a nearby retirement complex.

The capital murder charge carries the death penalty as possible punishment, Howe said, while the first-degree murder charge carries a life sentence with no chance for parole for at least 25 years. Cross is being held on $10 million bond, and is scheduled to appear in court at 1:30 p.m. Tuesday in Johnson County District Court.

Cross, a 73-year-old Vietnam War veteran from southwest Missouri, founded the Carolina Knights of the Ku Klux Klan in his native North Carolina and later the White Patriot Party. He is suspected of killing 69-year-old physician William Lewis Corporon and his 14-year-old grandson, Reat Griffin Underwood, outside the community center; both were Methodist. Moments later, 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.

Federal prosecutors say there's enough evidence to warrant putting the case before a grand jury as a hate crime. Moving the case from state to federal prosecutors would likely mean tougher punishments if Cross is convicted, but U.S. Attorney Barry Grissom said Tuesday that federal charges in the case were likely a week or more away, and Cross' state case would have to be resolved before he could be moved to a federal trial.

"Our system is more nimble, we can move a little bit quicker than the federal system. We've alleged he came into the community I've been elected to protect. ... This isn't about retribution, this is about seeking justice," Howe said.

Cross shouted "Heil Hitler" at television cameras as he was arrested after Sunday's killings, which shocked the city on the eve of Passover and refocused attention on the nation's problem with race-related violence.

The Southern Poverty Law Center, a nonprofit that monitors the activities of known white supremacists, says Cross, who also went by the name Frazier Glenn Miller, has been immersed in white supremacy 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, and served as the Carolina Knights' "grand dragon" before launching the supremacist White Patriot Party, the law center said.

By 1987, Cross 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 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 served three years in federal prison, and, as part of a plea bargain, testified against other Klan leaders in a 1988 sedition trial.

Cross ran for the U.S. House in 2006 and the U.S. Senate in 2010 in Missouri, 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 airwaves.

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lastandtwo April 15 2014 at 2:08 PM

Oh, Jack Ruby, where are you know, when we need you once more. Millers mother and father must be closely related by blood to produce something this terrible.

Flag Reply +1 rate up
mhskp April 15 2014 at 2:48 PM

Wouldn't it be great if the news media would quit making the pictures of the criminals and instead, replace them with the victims or one of the place where the crime occurred? Seems the bad get the photo publicity and the victims get......

Flag Reply +9 rate up
marlene April 15 2014 at 2:56 PM

His hatred for anyone but himself makes me sick to my stomach. What a bitter, hateful, sick, lonely, ugly, delusional, ignorant man.

Flag Reply +6 rate up
Betty Webb April 15 2014 at 6:52 PM

I've always found it interesting how often hate is fueled by stupidity. Now he's even being disowned by other "white supremacist" hate-mongers because he killed two Methodists and a Catholic. They'd have cheered if he killed Jews, but as it is... His stupidity has show the moved for exactly what it is.

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Peter April 15 2014 at 2:57 PM

It'll be interesting to see what happens to him in prison. Hopefully, they will keep him in the general population and not solitary.

Flag Reply +3 rate up
2 replies
netecutli Peter April 15 2014 at 3:14 PM

Not likely that he will be in general population. He would not last before he suffers and 'accident.'

Flag Reply 0 rate up
celienet Peter April 15 2014 at 3:27 PM

There are not many Jews in prison. But there are a lot of racists & white supremacists, He'd fit in just fine.

Flag Reply +1 rate up
rongravy April 15 2014 at 3:03 PM

Our tax dollars will be spent to defend this guy at trial. A waste of money that will be plus what it will cost to keep him alive until he dies. He should simply be burnt alive and the fires stoked by the relatives of his victims. Sounds fair to me.

Flag Reply +3 rate up
1 reply
Beverly Doyle rongravy April 15 2014 at 3:28 PM

We will have to hold a Constitutional Convention to get the laws changed that much. Sorry, but just think - the same rules now apply to you and me! Look, I'm not asking anyone to say nice things about this pathetic, damaged, hateful human being . . . just pointing out that our judicial system depends on equal access to the law and justice. I know the "good old days" of Wyatt Earp and Marshall Dillon seem much more appealing sometimes, but . . . not really.

Flag Reply +1 rate up
1 reply
user349842 Beverly Doyle April 15 2014 at 3:59 PM

I agree with you!

Flag 0 rate up
squeezerdm April 15 2014 at 3:08 PM

It is time to get back to one-day trials, and public hangings!

Flag Reply +4 rate up
milazz April 15 2014 at 3:10 PM

don;t spend a nickel on this piece of crap. Take this slob out back, use a $ .50 bullit, shoot in head, done.

Flag Reply +3 rate up
1 reply
HELLO REDDI milazz April 15 2014 at 3:40 PM

Agree 100 %

Flag Reply 0 rate up
netecutli April 15 2014 at 3:11 PM

This piece of **** should be in prison for he rest of his miserable life. The death penalty would be too quick a punishment. He should rot in a dark lonely place.

Flag Reply +6 rate up
1 reply
luiormo netecutli April 15 2014 at 4:10 PM

Alone and with no food and water!

Flag Reply 0 rate up
sherry4sue April 15 2014 at 3:15 PM

He looks ugly fat old white trash

Flag Reply +4 rate up
2 replies
Gypsydoodl sherry4sue April 15 2014 at 3:25 PM

you left out ...ignorant

Flag Reply +3 rate up
sweetandcountry8 sherry4sue April 15 2014 at 3:51 PM

I agree! Nothing but, scum!

Flag Reply +1 rate up
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