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May 22, 2013 0

In Vancouver, Washington, a Cluster of Luysters

brent-luyster-tightrope

Brent Luys­ter

Mem­bers of the Clark County, Wash­ing­ton, SWAT team arrested three men this past week, at least two of them known white suprema­cists, in con­nec­tion with a pos­si­ble hate crime at a Van­cou­ver bar in March 2013.  Arrested at their sep­a­rate res­i­dences were Brent Ward Luys­ter, Robert Arlen Luys­ter, and Don­ald H. McElfish. 

The three men allegedly attacked a 45-year-old black man at a bar in Rose Vil­lage, punch­ing, kick­ing and beat­ing the vic­tim while using racial slurs and threat­en­ing to kill him.  Police have charged the three sus­pects with second-degree felony assault and racially moti­vated mali­cious harassment.

The two Luys­ter broth­ers have a long his­tory of white supremacy and crim­i­nal activ­ity, dat­ing back to at least 2000.  That sum­mer, as racist skin­heads, the two men (and two oth­ers) attacked an African-American man in a racially-motivated assault.  They pleaded guilty to assault charges in 2001.  Three years later, police arrested Brent W. Luys­ter again, this time for vio­lat­ing parole by asso­ci­at­ing with another white suprema­cist.  In July 2005, Van­cou­ver police arrested Brent W. Luys­ter and another white suprema­cist on alle­ga­tions of mali­cious harassment.

Brent W. and Robert A. Luys­ter have not, how­ever, been the only Luys­ters to have got­ten in trou­ble in this fash­ion.  In late 2004, another Brent Luys­ter, Brent D. Luys­ter (iden­ti­fi­able by the “white pride” tat­toos on his upper arms), briefly escaped from the Larch Cor­rec­tions Cen­ter in east­ern Clark County.  He may be the father of Brent W. and Robert.

In early 2005, Port­land, Ore­gon, police arrested a fourth white suprema­cist Luys­ter, Michael Lee Luys­ter, for not hav­ing a driver’s license while trans­port­ing a car­load of white suprema­cists to protest at a local com­mu­nity cen­ter.  Port­land is just south of Vancouver.

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November 5, 2012 0

Idaho White Supremacist Wounds Two Deputies in Shootout

Kyle Alan Batt, a 27-year-old white suprema­cist from Cald­well, Idaho, remains hos­pi­tal­ized fol­low­ing a shootout on Octo­ber 23 in which Batt allegedly shot two Canyon County deputies search­ing for him in con­nec­tion with an aggra­vated assault inves­ti­ga­tion. The shoot­ings are the lat­est in a string of nearly 30 shootouts between police and domes­tic extrem­ists in the United States since 2009.

The inci­dent began ear­lier in the day when Batt allegedly appeared at the home of a woman with whom he had been hav­ing a rela­tion­ship. Batt report­edly car­ried a firearm and made threats at the woman. The woman called Cald­well police, but Batt had already left the scene when offi­cers arrived.

Later, five Canyon County sheriff’s deputies went to a res­i­dence in Cald­well look­ing for Batt.  Batt allegedly opened fire at the offi­cers as they approached the house, hit­ting two of them before flee­ing. One offi­cer was able to return fire and hit Batt before he fled. A few hours later, deputies found Batt hid­ing in a nearby garage, at which point he report­edly tried to take his own life by shoot­ing himself.

One of the two wounded deputies remains in seri­ous con­di­tion; the other was treated and released with only minor injuries. Batt was listed in crit­i­cal condition.

Batt has a long crim­i­nal his­tory, includ­ing sev­eral drug con­vic­tions. He is also a white suprema­cist with a large “white power” tat­too stretched across his breast­bone. He has con­nec­tions with other white suprema­cists in the Nampa-Boise area, includ­ing mem­bers of the Ham­mer­skins racist skin­head group. The Ham­mer­skins’ pres­ence in this area has sig­nif­i­cantly increased in recent years and the Ham­mer­skins held their 2012 “Ham­mer­fest,” the group’s annual large white power music con­cert, in the Nampa-Boise area on Octo­ber 6, less than a cou­ple of weeks before the shootout.

Among the 100+ atten­dees at the Boise Ham­mer­fest was Brent Rack­ley, the band­mate of Ham­mer­skin Wade Page, who killed six peo­ple and injured more dur­ing a shoot­ing ram­page at a Sikh tem­ple in Wis­con­sin in August 2012. It is not known if Batt attended Hammerfest.

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August 10, 2012 0

ADL Releases New Report On White Power Music Scene In The U.S.

The recent tragic shoot­ing spree at the Sikh tem­ple in Oak Creek, Wis­con­sin, in which Wade Michael Page killed six peo­ple before killing him­self after a shootout with police, has drawn atten­tion to the shad­owy world of white power music.

Page, a com­mit­ted white suprema­cist and mem­ber of the Ham­mer­skins, a hard­core racist skin­head group, was heav­ily involved in the white power music scene in the United States. He played in a num­ber of white power bands over the pre­vi­ous 12 years, most promi­nently the bands Def­i­nite Hate and End Apathy.

Page was just one of hun­dreds of white suprema­cist musi­cians lis­tened to by thou­sands of white suprema­cists in the United States and beyond. Today, white power music per­me­ates the sub­cul­ture of the white suprema­cist move­ment. Not all white suprema­cists enjoy white power music, but many of them do, espe­cially neo-Nazis and racist skin­heads. For lis­ten­ers, white power music is not sim­ply enter­tain­ment. It is music with a mes­sage, a medium used to express an ide­ol­ogy suf­fused with anger, hatred and violence.

ADL’s new report, The Sounds of Hate: The White Power Music Scene in the United States in 2012, details the cur­rent state of the white power music scene.

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