OVERLAND PARK, KS - The man suspected of shooting and killing people in rampages at two Jewish centers is a former KKK and White Patriot Party member, according to the Southern Poverty Law Center.
Frazier Glenn Cross, 73, is from Aurora, Mo. He was booked into jail Sunday evening after being apprehended by police. Reports indicate he was yelling “Heil, Hitler,” upon being arrested, but officials have neither confirmed nor denied that.
Cross is booked on a first-degree charge of premeditated murder, according to KSHB 41 Action News. He also goes by the alias Frazier Glenn Miller. As Miller, he was sued by the SPLC in 1985 for harassing African Americans.
Later that decade, the suspect served three years in federal prison for sending harassing white supremacist letters in the mail, according to KSHB.
Three people died in the shootings Sunday that occurred at the Jewish Community Center and at Village Shalom in Overland Park, Kan.
Early today, President Barack Obama released a statement offering support to the loved ones of those involved.
“I have asked my team to stay in close touch with our federal, state and local partners and provide the necessary resources to support the ongoing investigation,” Obama said. “While we do not know all of the details,” he said, “the initial reports are heartbreaking.”
Obama pledged the full support of the government.
Two of the deceased are a grandfather and grandson. Dr. William Lewis Corporon and Reat Griffin Underwood (Losen) had been at the Jewish Community Center for Underwood, 14, to audition for KC Superstars, which was conducted at the center’s theater, according to KSHB.
The third deceased victim has not been identified.
There are concerns as to whether Cross’ behavior is a hate crime attack on Jews. On Sunday night, the Anti-Defamation League, a group that works to fight the defamation of Jewish people, called the shootings a heinous act.
“While it is too early to label these shootings as a hate crime, the fact that two Jewish institutions were targeted by the same individual just prior to the start of the Passover holiday is deeply troubling and certainly gives us pause,” said Karen Aroesty, the St. Louis regional director of the ADL.