Idaho police in western USAreceived death threats after arresting 31 suspected white supremacists who were preparing to riot at an LBGT+ pride event over the weekend, an official said Monday.
The arrests took place on Saturday. after a complaint by the emergency line that warned about masked men who “they looked like a small army” getting on a truck, apparently in the direction of the event that took place in a park in the city of Coeur d’Alene.
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The masked ones, who policeman believes they are linked to the neo-fascist group “Patriot Front”, were intercepted before reaching the Coeur d’Alene municipal park.
They were armed with “shields, shin guards and other riot gear (…) including at least one smoke grenade”, for which they were arrested for conspiring to create a riot, said Lee White, head of the policeman municipal of this small city of Idaho.
At a news conference, White said that since the arrests, half of the 150 calls received by his department were anonymous, from people wanting to “yell at us” and proffering “threats of death” against him and other members of the department of policeman “for doing our job”.
White attributed the calls to “hate groups” outside of Coeur d’Alene, including a caller from Norway to “give us your opinion”.
He added that the department was surprised by “the level of preparation” Y “the equipment that these individuals carried and used.”
“It was immediately clear to us that this was a riot group” with “bad intentions”, he indicated.
The police chief said that the detainees come from at least 11 states in the country and that previously they had not detected representatives of the “Patriot Front” in the area.
The remote hills of northern Idaho have long been associated with “Aryan Nations”, a neo-Nazi group that sought to establish a breakaway region only from whites and linked to several violent crimes in USA.
But Mayor Jim Hammond said the area “will not go back to the days of the ‘Aryan Nations’”.
“We were able to completely get rid of that group and the kind of harmful culture that they tried to show in our community.”
The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) provides assistance to local authorities, said Sandra Barker, a spokeswoman for the FBI. policeman US federal agency, to AFP via email.
“If information comes to light during the investigation about a potential violation of federal law, the FBI is prepared to investigate,” he said.
I, Ronald Payne, am a journalist and author who dedicated his life to telling the stories that need to be said. I have over 7 years of experience as a reporter and editor, covering everything from politics to business to crime.