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Sirens & Gavels Aryan Nations archive

WEDNESDAY, AUG. 31, 2011

Aryan in hate crime faces 5 years to life 

A Coeur d'Alene man and reputed racist faces five years to life in prison if convicted of a hate crime under Idaho's repeat offender law. Joel Townsend Diekhoff, 29, an associate of local Aryan Nations member Jerald O'Brien, remains in the Kootenai County Jail on...

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TUESDAY, AUG. 30, 2011

Aryan in hate crime jailed on $50k bond 

A Coeur d'Alene man and reputed racist remains in jail on $50,000 after appearing in court on a hate-crime charge Monday. Joel Townsend Diekhoff, 29, an associate of local Aryan Nations member Jerald O'Brien, was arrested Saturday after Demetrius K. Lee, 39, said a white...

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FRIDAY, JUNE 10, 2011

Ex-local Aryan convicted in racist beating

A white supremacist who ran for the Hayden City Council in 2003 has been convicted of a racially motivated attack on a black man in southwestern Washington. Zachary Loren Beck, 32, (pictured in 2003) was convicted Wednesday of conspiracy to violate civil rights after a...

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Taco protester arraigned on gun charge

A Whitman County man who bragged online about being involved with racist taco-truck protests in Kootenai County pleaded not guilty to a federal gun charge today. A bail hearing for Jeremiah Daniel “J.D.” Hop, 29, is set for Tuesday at 10:30 a.m. before U.S. Magistrate...

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Murder plot victim slams federal prosecutors 

In a 16-page affidavit prosecutors suggested may have originated with her jailed husband, alleged murder plot target Cyndi Steele rails against a plea deal arranged with FBI informant Larry Fairfax and accuses the U.S. Attorney's Office of violating her rights as a victim. The document,...

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FRIDAY, JULY 23, 2010

Charges against Steele carry 30+ years

A former lawyer for the Aryan Nations jailed in an alleged murder-for-hire plot is to appear in federal court in Coeur d’Alene next week on three additional charges related to jailhouse phone calls and explosives discovered after his arrest. The new charges against Edgar J....

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TUESDAY, JULY 13, 2010

Steele seeks to keep feds out of client files

A former lawyer for the Aryan Nations is asking a judge to stop federal investigators from searching materials seized from his North Idaho home law office. Edgar J. Steele is concerned government searches may compromise attorney-client privilege, according to documents filed Monday in U.S. District...

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TUESDAY, JUNE 22, 2010

Sandpoint attorney Edgar Steele talks with the media about the McGuckin children of Sagle and how he now represents the family at a news conference Thursday evening in Sandpoint, May 31, 2001.  (File / The Spokesman-Review)

Steele's phone calls to wife, son released

Federal murder-for-hire suspect Edgar Steele will stay in jail pending trial after a judge found he had attempted to intimidate potential witnesses in the case – his wife and son. In a detention hearing Tuesday, federal prosecutors played two tapes of phone conversations Steele had...

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Suspect in murder plot held without bail

A suspected hitman-turned-informant who federal investigators say didn’t tell them he’d already planted a bomb on the car of a murder-plot target was ordered held without bail on Monday. U.S. Magistrate Candy Dale called her decision to keep Larry A. Fairfax, 49, behind bars “very...

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MONDAY, JUNE 21, 2010

Suspect in Steele's murder plot due in court 

The man accused of planting a pipe bomb under Edgar Steele's wife's SUV is due in federal court in Coeur d'Alene this afternoon for a bail hearing. Larry A. Fairfax, 49, has been in custody since last Monday night. The Sagle man apparently told federal...

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Informant forgets to tell FBI about pipe bomb

A man who approached federal agents last week about an alleged murder-for-hire plot hatched by a former lawyer for the Aryan Nations may have left out a key detail: He’d already rigged an explosive to the intended victim’s car. Larry Andrew Fairfax, 49, remains in...

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Steele: 'This is a very emotional situation'

Appearing for the first time on federal charges related to an alleged murder-for-hire plot, Edgar Steele described himself Tuesday as a "frail" and "elderly" man who's undergone four surgeries in the past six months, including open heart surgery. He also blasted the federal agents for...

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MONDAY, JUNE 14, 2010

1st on Sirens: Edgar Steele's mugshot

Edgar J. Steele, the lawyer who represented the Aryan Nations, is due in U.S. District Court in Coeur d'Alene at 3:30 p.m. today on a felony charge of using interstate commerce to commission murder for hire. Steele was arrested Friday at his Sagle home, accused...

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Ex-Aryans lawyer arrested in murder plot

A North Idaho attorney who defended the Aryan Nations and its founder, Richard Butler, is scheduled to appear in federal court today on charges he arranged to have his wife and mother-in-law killed. Edgar J. Steele, 64, (left, in 2001) was arrested Friday at his...

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MONDAY, DEC. 21, 2009

Men deny hate crime allegations

Three brothers accused of harassing a Coeur d’Alene man because of his ethnicity say they simply asked to buy electrical equipment from the man and were stunned when he pulled a gun on them. Ira Gino Tankovich, 47, Frank James Tankovich, 46, and William Michael...

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FRIDAY, DEC. 11, 2009

Idaho Aryan well-known in Montana 

What a difference a letter makes. Police reports spelled the name of one of the neo-Nazis cited for littering last summer as "Kevin B. McGurre." Turns out, it's "Kevin B. McGuire." I realized this when putting together this story on charges being dropped against the...

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FRIDAY, AUG. 21, 2009

Spokane Police Chief Anne Kirkpatrick emphasizes her department's commitment to protecting residents from racist harassment at a news conference Friday, Aug. 21, 2009, near the state line. The event was held in reaction to the recent distribution of racist fliers in Coeur d'Alene. (Jesse Tinsley / The Spokesman-Review)

Officials promise 'boldness' against Aryans 

Criminal citations and civil lawsuits are options. But the recent surge in racist activity is best dealt with by a unified community dedicated to rejecting discrimination and hate, leaders from across the Inland Northwest said Friday.“We have been vested with the authority and the power...

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MONDAY, AUG. 10, 2009

Aryans move to Athol

Not that there's ever an appropriate place for the Aryan Nations, but if they're going to insist on calling a North Idaho town home, a place called Athol seems a bit fitting. (This is not an affront to the fine people of the tiny town...

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Public safety news from the Inland Northwest and beyond.