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March 18, 2015

Arizona Shooting Spree Suspect May Have White Supremacist Connections

After a manhunt that lasted several hours and involved multiple police departments, authorities in Mesa announced the apprehension of a suspect believed responsible for multiple shootings in Mesa on March 18 that killed one and injured at least five more.   The suspect in the shootings has been identified by media reports as Ryan Elliott Giroux.

Ryan Elliott Giroux

Ryan Elliott Giroux

Giroux has a past criminal history, including a stint in state prison.  A Department of Corrections mug shot from his time in prison reveals that Giroux likely is or was a white supremacist, based on his facial tattoos.  Giroux had the words “skin” and “head” tattooed on his eyebrows, while next to his left eye is a prominent “88” tattoo.  The numerical symbol “88,” which stands for “Heil Hitler” (because H is the 8th letter of the alphabet), is one of the most popular white supremacist tattoos in the United States.

Giroux also has a Celtic knotwork tattoo on his chin.  Such tattoos are popular with white supremacists, though also used by others.

The shootings began at a motel in Mesa around 8:45am, where two people were shot, one fatally.  The shooter went to a nearby restaurant, where he allegedly shot a woman and stole a car.  Other shootings occurred as the suspect tried to evade apprehension.   Mesa police officers eventually tracked down and apprehended Giroux.

The motive for the shootings is not yet known.

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June 17, 2014

Murder Suspect Fan Of “Patriot” Movement Survivalist Guru

gary-alan-lewis

Gary Alan Lewis

After a manhunt that lasted several days, police in Portland, Oregon, have arrested Gary Alan Lewis on murder and unlawful use of a weapon charges for allegedly killing a female tenant and hiding her body in the wall of a shed.

The search for both Lewis and the victim was complicated by the fact that Lewis had built an underground bunker on his property.  Police also feared the possibility of booby traps as they searched the property.

The bunker, which Lewis built a number of years ago, was apparently a product of his “Patriot” movement anti-government and survivalist philosophy.  Lewis viewed the government as a “Total Mafia Organization run by the Elites who want us as Slaves.”  In 2013, Lewis claimed he wanted to move out of Portland and find a “safe place to escape to when the city becomes untenable,” a reference to the common survivalist belief of an imminent collapse of civilization.   A year earlier he posted to a survivalist “Meetup” group that “collapse is eminent [sic] if you have been watching long.”  People, he wrote, “need to prep for Martial law or UN law.”

Lewis, who also used the names Gary Allan Lewis and Gary Loomis, was in particular a devotee of survivalist guru James Wesley Rawles.  Rawles, a blogger, author and survivalist consultant, is most well-known for having written a series of novels popularizing the notion of a “coming global collapse.”  Rawles, though more well-known as a survivalist, has also been an adherent of the anti-government “sovereign citizen” movement.

Rawles’ best known book is a novel called Patriots, about a band of survivors of a global collapse who find a refuge in northern Idaho where they rebuild a society based on “true Constitutional law.”  Lewis described Patriots as “the book that tells it all” on one of his Facebook pages and repeatedly recommended it in on-line postings and comments.

Lewis is even listed on the Meetup group page as having attended a “Preppers Book Club” meeting in the Portland area in June 2012 to discuss another Rawles book, How to Survive the End of the World As We Know It.

Lewis also described Rawles’ Survival Blog as his favorite website.

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June 9, 2014

“Dawn of a New Day”: Las Vegas Shooter’s Final Message

The most recent entry on Jerad Miller’s Facebook, left on Saturday, June 7, is chilling: “The dawn of a new day. May all of our coming sacrifices be worth it.”jerad-amanda-miller

Jerad Miller, along with his wife Amanda, are the two suspects who committed suicide in a Las Vegas Walmart on Sunday, after allegedly fatally shooting two Las Vegas police officers in a nearby restaurant and a third person at the Walmart itself.

Based on their Internet writings, Jerad and Amanda Miller were both right-wing anti-government extremists of the “Patriot” movement variety, believing in all the common militia-type conspiracy theories about the “New World Order,” including concentration camps for Americans, coming martial law, and chemtrails, among others.

Some of Jerad’s postings in the months before the Las Vegas incident seem to reflect a growing radicalization. In March, Jerad declared that he had “compromised enough” and that he was “prepared to die” for his convictions about freedom and tyranny. “The day of your judgment will come,” he wrote, “not from my hand, for you will make me a martyr…Come for me, free me from your slavery. Give me the death a hero deserves. Help wake the masses to your corruption and treason. I f*****g dare you!”

In April, Jerad Miller travelled to the scene of the Cliven Bundy standoff, hoping that it “could be the next Waco and start of [the] revolution.”   In early May, Miller claimed that “there is no greater cause to die for than liberty” and that he would willingly do so. “Death, in a sense is freedom from tyranny,” he posted. Miller claimed that he and his wife “will not submit to fascist rule” and “are willing to sacrifice everything.”

Amanda Miller also had anti-government and conspiratorial beliefs. “Every day I realize how more and more people are asleep and only a few of us are awake,” she wrote in 2012. “The government is trying to take away our rights…only the few of us are willing to fight back.” Miller stated that she was “proud to be awake to see what[‘]s really going on.”

The anger that the Millers felt at the government and police may have increased in 2013, when Jerad Miller had to serve a period of home confinement following a criminal incident apparently involving marijuana. “Here I am,” he wrote about the confinement, “because the previous generations of Americans were a bunch of spineless zombies.” Hopefully, he wrote, “we can achieve freedom without killing the older generations off. It may come to that.”

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