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Trying to Keep Violent White Supremacists Out of Utah

Trying to Keep Violent White Supremacists Out of Utah

Estimated read time: 2-3 minutes

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Paul Nelson, KSL NewsRadioThe death of corrections officer Stephen Anderson sheds new light on the problem of white supremacist gangs in Utah. Have there been any significant changes in the fight against these gangs over the last decade?

It's a long walk inside the Salt Lake County Jail to get to the man who says he killed corrections officer Stephen Anderson.

Curtis Allgier says, "I did an interview on MSNBC and Court TV, I did 'Lockup' and 'Inside,' and on there the lady asked me what I thought about white supremacists in Utah. I told her, ‘There are no white supremacists in Utah.'"

Curtis Allgier is not saying there are no white supremacy groups in Utah, just that gangs like the Soldiers of Aryan Culture and the Silent Aryan Warriors don't go far enough.

"These SAC and SAWs, they ain't no white supremacists. They're a bunch of punks and b**** and rats and chicken cases," Allgier says.

Well punks and chicken cases or not, that doesn't matter. Federal officials want them gone.

FBI Joint Terrorism Task Force Supervisor Don Schultz says, "Not only with white supremacist gangs but with any other gangs."

Schultz says the numbers of violent white supremacists have not decreased significantly in Utah over the last 10 years, but they haven't gone up, either. He says most of these gang members are already in custody.

"Whatever happens in the prison ultimately ends up in the community. So you need to address it on the street and in the prison," Schultz says.

He says members of groups like SAC and SAW don't usually stay out of trouble if they're released.

"A majority of them are involved in methamphetamine trade, production and distribution of methamphetamine. They also gravitate toward identity theft," he says.

Schultz says there is a fine line investigators have to walk. He says there are several groups in Utah that preach white power, but they don't commit any crimes. Those groups aren't investigated at all.

"We're concerned with someone that belonged to a group, and then maybe that group was not moving toward achieving the goal -- the ultimate goal -- which is the overthrow of the U.S. government. He goes off on his own and commits a violent act," Schultz says.

He says some of these people who claim to be white supremacists in prison may not actually believe the message they are delivering. He says many of these gang members joined to protect themselves from other gangs inside.

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