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March 22, 2013

Texas Police Shoot White Supremacist From Colorado

A member of the 211 Crew, a Colorado-based racist prison gang, was shot and mortally wounded by police on March 21.  Police shot Evan Spencer Ebel, 28, of Denver, Colorado, following a high-speed chase and shootout. 

The incident began in Montague County, Texas, when Deputy James Boyd was allegedly shot by Ebel, twice in the chest and once in the ear, during a routine traffic stop.  Boyd, who was wearing body armor, suffered non-life-threatening injuries. 

Members from multiple law enforcement agencies pursued Ebel, who allegedly fired his gun out the window as he led police on a high-speed chase until he crashed into a semi-trailer truck on Highway U.S. 380 in Decatur.  According to police, Ebel exited his vehicle after the crash and opened fire on police who returned fire, mortally wounding Ebel.

Ebel, a parolee from the Colorado Department of Corrections, has a criminal history dating back to 2003 when he was convicted of robbery.  He was also convicted of assaulting a prison guard in 2008.  Currently, authorities are investigating Ebel’s possible connection to two El Paso County, Colorado, murders which occurred earlier this week, including that of Department of Corrections Director Tom Clements. 

Ebel is the second 211 Crew member killed by police in just over a year.  In February 2012, Jeremiah Barnum of Englewood, Colorado, was shot and killed by police after he allegedly ignored an officer’s orders to stop, and instead reached for a gun in his waistband.  Barnum, who was a high ranking member of 211 Crew, was convicted in 1999 of being an accessory after the fact to the race-based murder of a West African immigrant in Denver.  

211 Crew Tattoo

The 211 Crew, named after the California penal code for robbery, also known as the Aryan Alliance, was started in the Denver County Jail in 1995 by Benjamin Davis.  In 2007, Davis was convicted of operating a criminal enterprise from prison that sold drugs and ordered attacks on inmates and others outside prison.

The gang consists of several hundred members who are recruited in prison, but continue their criminal activities after their release, including attempted murder, assault, robbery, racketeering, bribery, witness tampering, and drug distribution.  As with most racist prison gangs, any white supremacist ideology they might have is secondary to their organized crime or criminal enterprise motives. 

This shooting, the second this month, is a continuation of a string of at least 30 shootouts between police and domestic extremist in the United States since 2009.  Earlier this month police fatally shot anti-government extremist Jeffery Allen Wright following a four-hour standoff in Florida.

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March 15, 2013

Police Shoot Florida Sovereign Citizen During Standoff

A four-hour standoff between police and an anti-government extremist ended with the fatal shooting of the extremist in Navarre, Florida, on March 9.  Members of the Santa Rosa County Sheriff’s Department SWAT team killed Jeffery Allen Wright, 55, while attempting to serve felony arrest warrants on multiple charges related to counterfeiting.

After deputies first arrived at Wright’s home, Wright fled to the garage, then up the stairs to the second story of the garage, where he barricaded the stairwell and fired a shot from a handgun.  Refusing commands to surrender, Wright allegedly repeatedly dared police to “come and get him” and warned deputies that if they came upstairs they would “not come back down.”   The officers called the SWAT team to the scene.  Wright reportedly did not respond to the overtures of investigators and an attempt by the police to use tear gas was unsuccessful.

Later, Wright allegedly moved some of the items barricading the stairs and sat down at the top of the stairwell, holding a gun.  According to police, Wright pointed the handgun at SWAT officers at the bottom of the stairs, causing several of them to fire at Wright, killing him.  

The arrest warrants against Wright stemmed from a traffic stop incident in September 2012 when a deputy pulled Wright over for speeding.  Wright, an adherent of the anti-government sovereign citizen movement, did not believe that the government had any authority over him.  He was reportedly belligerent during the traffic stop, refusing to provide a driver’s license or get out of his vehicle.  He provided the arresting officer with an “Affidavit of Reservation of Rights,” a phony sovereign citizen document designed to warn officers that actions against them are a violation of the Uniform Commercial Code (UCC) .  Wright was ultimately charged with resisting an officer and obstruction of justice, and cited for not having a valid tag or vehicle registration.  He later attempted to use fraudulent money orders (a common sovereign citizen tactic) to pay the Santa Rosa County Clerk’s office for the citations he received during the traffic stop; this resulted in the counterfeiting charges.

In 2010 and again in 2012, Wright filed UCC documents  as part of a sovereign citizen tactic known as “redemption,” a complicated set of conspiracy theories that allege the government created fictitious duplicates of all American citizens to use as collateral for its international debt.  In the 2012 document, Wright uses typical sovereign citizen phraseology and symbology, such as declaring that his address is “without the U.S.” and putting brackets around the zip code (sovereign citizens have specific conspiracy theories about zip codes).

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