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March 15, 2012 Off

White Supremacist Arrested for 2005 Arizona Murder

Source:  Mari­copa County Sheriff’s Office
On March 9, 2012, Mari­copa County author­i­ties for­mally “arrested” Toby Ray Gas­pard, a mem­ber of the Vin­lan­ders Social Club (VSC), a vio­lent racist skin­head group, for the 2005 mur­der of another racist skin­head, Cory Simp­son.  The arrest gave notice that detec­tives had finally cracked a mur­der case nearly seven years old.
Simp­son, 31 at the time of his mur­der, had been released from prison nearly a year ear­lier after serv­ing four years on an armed rob­bery charge. He was one of the lead­ers of the Canyon State Skin­heads (CSS), a local racist skin­head crew. The skin­head scene in Ari­zona in 2005 was com­pli­cated, thanks to the rise of the VSC and its growth through adopt­ing mem­bers of local racist skin­head crews, includ­ing mem­bers of the Canyon State Skinheads.   
On Decem­ber 24, 2005, Simp­son attended a party in Mesa for local racist skin­heads, held at Gaspard’s home. Gas­pard was also a high-ranking CSS mem­ber.  The party turned ugly when other skin­heads con­fronted Simp­son. One of them repeat­edly stabbed Simp­son, leav­ing him bleed­ing on his front lawn. Simpson’s wife and another racist skin­head, Christo­pher Gromberg, took Simp­son to a hos­pi­tal, but he had been fatally wounded.
Gas­pard became a sus­pect in the mur­ders. How­ever, wit­nesses, gen­er­ally white suprema­cists who hated the police, were not exactly will­ing to talk.  Some may have also feared retal­i­a­tion, which turned out to be a jus­ti­fi­able fear in April 2006, when Gromberg was shot to death, execution-style, with two shots to the back of the head (in Novem­ber 2011, VSC mem­ber David Bounds was indicted for the mur­der of Gromberg).  
Mesa and Phoenix police (espe­cially Phoenix’s Career Crim­i­nal Squad) did not give up on the case. In 2008, Gas­pard was extra­dited from Okla­homa to Ari­zona to face ques­tions about the Simp­son mur­der (he would later be con­victed on unre­lated weapons charges and given a five year prison sen­tence, insur­ing his future avail­abil­ity). Finally, in Jan­u­ary 2012, an indict­ment was handed down that charged Gas­pard with second-degree mur­der, assist­ing a crim­i­nal syn­di­cate, and mis­con­duct involv­ing weapons.  The for­mal arrest—a trans­fer from state prison to the Mari­copa County Jail—occurred in March. 
ADL assisted Mesa and Phoenix police in the inves­ti­ga­tion from the day of the mur­der onwards.

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