Lyon and Onion called their skinhead comrades on their cell phones, including Kerns and Aaron Smith, both of whom had been involved in the Rogue West attack. Soon, as many as 10 skinheads were wailing on the unarmed African-American. At some point, Kerns pulled a knife and stabbed the man twice in the abdomen, puncturing his bowel twice and injuring his liver. Fortunately, the victim survived after he was rushed to the hospital by the Phoenix Fire Department.

There were no CSI moments in the investigation, no silver bullets. Rather, Silbert's squad made the case with countless hours of interviews, lineups, surveillance, reviewing photos of the perpetrators, and consulting with the ADL. The fact that Kerns bragged about the attack afterward at a party helped seal his fate.

This year, all five men the police arrested for the brutal attacks copped plea deals. Kerns, the worst of the bunch, pleaded guilty to two counts of aggravated assault and, as mentioned, earned the sentence of a decade behind bars. Smith did likewise and caught five. The others got off relatively easy, with three years' probation.

Don Logan (left) and Phoenix police Lieutenant Heston Silbert, at the recent ADL of Arizona awards function.
Stephen Lemons
Don Logan (left) and Phoenix police Lieutenant Heston Silbert, at the recent ADL of Arizona awards function.


Read another example of racial profiling by Sheriff Joe's forces in New Times' series "Are Your Papers in Order?" This week: "Rules Be Damned."

None of them would have seen the inside of a courtroom for these assaults had not the Phoenix PD and the ADL been on their games. For that, we owe our thanks.


It seemed appropriate that the only casualty in Saturday's National Socialist Movement march to the state Capitol occurred after the march, when a car full of swastika-sniffers made a wrong turn at Seventh Avenue and Van Buren Street, colliding with a truck.

One black-shirt was hurt, and as he writhed on the curb, in pain from a leg injury, anarchists rushed to the corner and taunted NSM members milling about as their comrade waited for an ambulance.

Cops separated the two sides, as each dared the other to cross the police line.

The Hitler worshippers, including Mesa neo-Nazi J.T. Ready and NSM spokesman Charles Wilson, eventually retreated, getting a ride from another Doc Martens-wearing schmuck. They claimed they were heading to the Arizona State Fair, but the wanna-be schutzstaffels bee-lined to a swastika-burning after-party in Maricopa, according to my sources.

Later via phone, I asked Wilson to confirm the location, but he declined. He asked me why I wanted to go. I told him I'd never seen a swastika burning and I wanted to let the anarchists know where they could join in the fun.

As for the collision, Phoenix police Sergeant Brian Murray confirmed at the scene that the Nazi driver was at fault. (Apparently, certain members of the "master race" can't drive a lick.) Unfortunately, the driver of the truck had no ID or proof of insurance and, therefore, was taken into custody. Murray said the man would be cited and released as long as he had no outstanding warrants. Though the anarchists were angered by the truck driver's arrest, they were jubilant that a Nazi sustained a busted leg.

They weren't the only ones.

The Nazi gathering on the Senate lawn earlier was also a wreck. About 150 anarchists and assorted counter-protesters flipped off the NSM putzes and created so much noise by yelling and shaking homemade rattlers that the neo-Nazis could barely hear each other.

Despite boasts by NSM leaders that they could turn out 200 white supremacists, they barely hit the 60 mark. After tromping down to the Capitol from 12th Avenue and Adams Street, where they left their cars parked, they ended up jabbering through a microphone at a hostile crowd, held back by a cordon of about 100 Phoenix cops, DPS officers, and Capitol police, including Phoenix PD cops on horseback.

A couple of water bottles and a can full of dry beans (one of the aforementioned rattlers) were tossed at the Nazis, but that was as physical as it got. The Nazis generally acted like lumpen oafs, ripping up Mexican flags and wiping their rears with them. Apparently, it was an act of hygiene at which the Nazis were unpracticed.

Most of the Nazis were out-of-towners, including speakers like ex-NSM führer Clifford Herrington and current NSM "commander" Jeff Schoep. Schoep has a record for accompanying his daughter's mom as she ripped off $4,000 in computer equipment in 1998. According to the Southern Poverty Law Center, "Four children were in the back of the car during the arrest." Call it Nazi family values.

Herrington, a pear-shaped geezer in a period S.A. outfit, was embroiled in a scandal in the Nazi ranks when it was discovered that his wife is a high priestess in the Joy of Satan Ministry, and that the Satanist church was using an NSM post office box as its address. Man, do Nazis give Satanists a bad name.

At the demonstration, the Nazis waved swastika flags while cowering behind red shields. They claimed they were using the NSM logo on the shields to demonstrate against illegal immigration. Now if ever there was a reason to support the undocumented among us!

But Nazis being Nazis, they spent most of their energy blaming everything on the Joos. Herrington kept shouting, "Death to the Jewish traitors!" like his pathetic life depended on it.

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Very good blog.This one is the blog which I like most I do agree with Pulsifer too! I absolutely accept as true with everything you have stated. It’s always good to share and compare opinions when it comes to this kind matter.


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Beetle Bailey
Beetle Bailey

I agree with Pulsifer. Lemons gives credit where credit is due. If a cop does something meritorious, like Silbert, he's credited. If he fucks up like MCSO's Loren Gatyan in Guadalupe, Lemons lets 'em have it. That's fair and the job of a watchdog. Keep it up, Lemons.

Emil Pulsifer
Emil Pulsifer

Phoenix New Times doesn't publish "anti-police" articles. They have been highly critical of the MCSO, but even then, some writers (e.g., Stephen Lemons) have on several occasions bent over backwards to note that the MCSO has some fine deputies but a derelict and corrupt administration.


Bravo to Lt. Silbert. Is that guy like 7 feet tall or what? When the skinheads see this big ass cop, they better atart runnin'. Nice to see the New Times praise police instead of tearing them down for a change. They ain't all bad.

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