The Hatewatch blog is managed by the staff of the Intelligence Project of the Southern Poverty Law Center, an Alabama-based civil rights organization.

Neo-Nazi Shock Jock Hal Turner Arrested for Incitement

By Heidi Beirich on June 4, 2009 - 9:37 am, Posted in White Supremacist

On Wednesday, veteran neo-Nazi threatmeister Hal Turner, who Hatewatch reported in 2008 may have been on the FBI payroll, was taken into custody by police in his hometown of North Bergen, N.J. According to Turner’s blog, the police tricked him into coming to the station by telling him about a possible death threat against him. Turner is scheduled to appear in court today to face extradition to Connecticut, where police reportedly intend to charge him with inciting injury to persons or property.

The charges stem from a posting on Turner’s blog that asked his readers to “take up arms” against two Connecticut state officials, Sen. Andrew McDonald and Rep. Michael Lawlor. The Connecticut State Capitol Police Chief, Michael Fallon, said Turner’s comments went “above and beyond the threshold of free speech.” “He is inciting others through his website to commit acts of violence and has created fear and alarm,” said Fallon.

Turner’s racist rants and violent threats are legendary. Railing against President Bush in 2007, he told his audience that, “a well-placed bullet can solve a lot of problems.” He has written that “we need to start SHOOTING AND KILLING Mexicans as they cross the border” and argued that killing certain federal judges “may be illegal, but it wouldn’t be wrong.”

In 2006, after he published an attack on New Jersey Supreme Court justices that also included several of their home addresses, state police massively beefed up security for the members of the court, checking on one justice’s house more than 200 times.

Never one to fear going over the top, in another post Turner dreamed of a mass attack on the Obama inaugural. He mused that it would be a good thing to use an unmanned drone carrying explosives to attack inaugural crowds and said a mass murder of those attending the festivities “would be a public service.”

“I won’t say what may happen Tuesday but I will say this,” Turner wrote. “After Tuesday, the name Hal Turner may live in infamy. Let it be known that I saw what was necessary and decided to do what had to be done. I make no apology to those affected or their families.”

Turner’s arrest is ironic given the evidence that it appears he has worked as a paid informant for the FBI. In January 2008, unidentified hackers electronically confronted Turner in the forum of his website for his radio program, “The Hal Turner Show.” After a heated exchange, they told Turner that they had successfully hacked into his E-mails and found correspondence with an FBI agent who is apparently Turner’s handler. Then they posted an alleged July 2007 E-mail to the agent in which Turner hands over a message from someone who sent in a death threat against Sen. Russ Feingold (D-Wisc.). “Once again,” Turner writes to his handler, “my fierce rhetoric has served to flush out a possible crazy.” In what is allegedly a portion of another E-mail, Turner discusses the money he is paid.

When asked in 2008 about Turner’s relationship to the FBI, the agency declined comment. Agent Richard Kolko told Hatewatch, “Longstanding FBI policy prohibits disclosing who may or may not provide information.”

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  • hickory

    Turner’s statements must be viewed in the larger context of his past history and continuous COURSE OF CONDUCT threatening judges and others where as early as August 10, 1998 he posted thusly (see Google groups):

    “As a consequence of this tragedy, I will contact the families of the victims of this fire. I’m going to give those families the home addresses of NAACP Officers who brought this lawsuit, the home addresses of their attorneys and home address of Federal Judge Mary Ann Trump Barry. It ought to be interesting to see how grieving families dispense revenge on those really responsible for the death of their loved ones!”

    In the Connecticut situation, Turner blogged, ”It is our intent to foment direct action against these individuals personally. These beastly government officials should be made an example of as a warning to others in government: Obey the Constitution or die.”

    This and additional instances speak to INTENT. If Turner had spontaneously opined off the cuff that certain judges need to be killed, then he might have a good leg to stand on. Posting maps to find these judges also speaks to his repeatedly stated intent to foment violence.

  • Chuck

    Right-Wing Warmonger and Hatemonger?
    Geez, Kim. Aren’t you just spouting what might be called ‘liberal’ buzzwords?
    People that use the words ‘warmonger’ and ‘hatemonger’ are usually left-wing socialists that are ill-informed as to how the world really works. People like you are akin to the folks back in the 60s and early 70s that protested the war in Vietnam and then walked away after the fall of Saigon, no longer having anything to say regarding the communists having just over-run a nation formerly struggling for its freedom.
    It seems that as long as you have a tank of gas in the car and food in the fridge you seem satisfied. I don’t know about Flanker, but there is a disproportionate powerbase that consists of Jewish people loyal to Israel first-and-foremost, despite being citizens of this country. These same people seem to think that the USA is a pawn for Israel to play with.
    There are also loyal Americans that happen to be Jewish.
    Turner didn’t rail against the latter but hated the former. He expressed his anger that the Zionists had too much influence on what this nation did and he strove to fight the same liberalism that is being pushed down the throats of Americans that happen to believe in the right to free speech; and also to fight for the right of Americans to control the government of their own country without foreign influence. He also seems especially to believe that the founding fathers’ words – regarding how to stay free – are as valid today as they were 200 and some years ago.
    If you read the Federalist papers, you’d see what measures these men thought would be necessary to keep government in the hands of the people rather than self-serving tyrants. Try to picture the constitution as a cornerstone among the building blocks of our nation rather than a flexible ‘living document’ as liberals seem to treat it.
    Without the basic freedoms to think and speak we are nothing but chattel.
    Calling people names like hatemonger and warmonger won’t further your cause. Being loud and using angry words – does not necessarily make a person right.
    Freedom to express an idea is what we are supposed to be all about. Just because someone doesn’t like a particular opinion doesn’t mean they should be able to lock someone up for expressing that opinion. If you don’t like what someone else says, as George Carlin used to say, change the channel.
    Controlling speech isn’t the answer. Nor should we pass laws that protect some members of our society through the use of stricter penalties against those that would harm them. Why should a judge receive more protection under the law than a common citizen? Why should a federal judge be more valuable than say – an innocent child who by the accident of her birth was born in the poor section of some inner-city? A fine example would be an incident in which (because of the present example of Hal Turner’s so-called threats) – a federal judge being assassinated by some lunatic. In such an example, there would be lots of media coverage and the prosecutor handling the case would demand the killer go to jail for life or to be subjected to the death penalty and he or she would be correct. Compare that to an incident where little kid from an unspecific inner-city ghetto was murdered in a drive-by shooting. We the public would have to hope that the police agency in charge of the case would have enough resources to pursue justice for her family. We would also hope that the penalty would fit the crime and that the judge handling the case if it was ever brought to trial would sentence the guilty offender with all the strength the law would allow. Sadly this is often NOT the case. Too often liberal judges give walking papers to recidivist criminals. There is a disparity here.
    It is unfortunate that Judges can continually make rulings that don’t reflect the law but instead reflect the politics of that particular judge. I believe this case revolves around the right of the people to keep and bear arms. On this matter, the Supremes ruled that the DC gun ban was illegal. The lesser court that Turner railed about ignored their superior court’s own example and okayed the ban on possession of firearms by private citizens for use in self-defense. In Heller vs. the District of Columbia, that argument was won by the plaintiff. It was the lower court’s obligation to follow the higher court’s example.
    He expressed an opinion that neither threatened those judges but could have inspired others to commit criminal acts. That’s free speech. Terrible that he found it necessary to utter such words it may be, but he should be able to express an opinion as easily as you expressed yours by calling Flanker a hatemonger and a warmonger. You’re as guilty of hate-speech as Turner is if your standards allow you to name-call but disallow Turner the same freedom to express his views. Frankly, Turner was an idiot to do what he did but the government was foolish to prosecute him for violating a law that doesn’t exist. Turner didn’t threaten anyone. What he did do however, was incite others to do so. The first amendment is supposed to have protected him from unlawful prosecution. The charges are simply not consistent with the act. Only tyrants would be able to get away with such a prosecution and so far the tyrants have done so. Freedom is apparently not free.
    At the very least, these judges that violated the established precedent set by the higher court did not rule according to our laws. They should at the very least be censured and possibly recalled. Should they be harmed? Never. Unseated, yes. Retired? Probably. Turned thought ‘other people’ should harm these judges. That’s possibly incitement to violence. He never personally threatened these people himself. The court should therefore amend the charges to accurately reflect what he did do, and not prosecute the man for a crime he didn’t commit. Then the grand-jury should throw out the charges because he is not guilty of anything other than expressing an opinion that is guaranteed by the first amendment.
    As much as I hate violence (see my former comment), I have to go with the constitution on this point and remind you that your railing and name calling are as hateful as anything Turner has ever said. Politics should be discussed by responsible adults that are mature enough not to call other people names or generalize others that happen to disagree with them.
    Hal Turner is a political criminal. He should be freed. If he personally harms someone, whether a judge, a law enforcement officer or a kid from a ghetto, he should be prosecuted with every bit of strength that could be mustered against him. Until then, so-called (thought-crimes and hate-crimes) against an obviously corrupt and tyrannical government should not allowed to be prosecuted.
    So, Kim K, please keep this in mind. Name calling is just as bad as what Turner is guilty of. I won’t call you names even though I disagree with you. Under the meaning of the law, you have your right to express an opinion and not be ridiculed for it. I disagree with you but I’m not going to name call.

  • http://speedracer20NJ@comcast.net Kim K

    Flanker, that STILL does not make it right to threaten anyone.
    But then you seem to think it’s okay. It makes me wonder if you’re one of ‘them’, a right-wing warmonger and hatemonger.

  • Flanker

    What he said IS protected by the constitution.

    This is a blatant communist-style persecution.

    Free him right now jew-servile government!

  • Chuck

    Kim K said,

    VIOLENCE ACHIEVES NOTHING.

    Kim, you are wrong about that. Violence won the United States Freedom in the Revolutionary war. Violence in WWII won freedom for Europe from Nazi aggression. Violence in Iraq and Afghanistan is winning the citizens of that nation the right to be free. Unfortunately, as Turner suggested, violence might break out in this country as we begin to realize – after it is too late – that our freedom has been legislated away by bad judges that don’t follow the law and take away the rights from citizens of this country. Personally I hate violence and would like to see a peaceful solution to the ills that pervade our society. For proof violence DOES achieve things, read about the gun confiscation attempted by the British that sparked the battle of Lexington and Concord that led to the Revolutionary War. Read the Federalist Papers and see for yourself that the founding fathers recommended violence against tyrants. Yes Kim K violence settles lots of things. However, as a civilized society we should be able to avoid violence by thinking for ourselves. But alas! Thinking for ourselves no longer exists in these, the United Socialist States of America. The government will think for all of us and tax us for the privilege. Think about it and you’ll see for yourself that violence works plenty well at achieving. Lets hope it won’t go that far though and let’s hope American wake up before it is too late and violence is necessary. God willing and the Creek don’t rise there will be a peaceful solution to American stupidity and governmental abuse of the rights of citizens.

  • Kim K

    Hal Turner and his lunatic views make Rush Limbaugh and Michael Savage sound like they have some sense (which is not saying a lot!)
    I believe Hal Turner is capable of inciting the lunatic fringe to do absolutely terrible acts of violence….like the bombing of abortion clinics, churches, and synagogues. Just because one is pro-life does not justify bombing an abortion clinic (which defies all logic because you are killing not only the doctor but the innocent lives you’re trying to save. VIOLENCE ACHIEVES NOTHING.

  • GENO the Valkyrie Warlord

    “I think we should just throw out the Constitution and the rule of law.”

    Plain and simple–
    If you really want to live in a lawless society, knockweed, you can always relocate to societies that harbour no Constitution or the rule of law. Besides, this is a free country(with laws), so who’s gonna stop you from moving out simply because you can’t seem to live under the rule of law?

    “Oh wait, the Jews in charge of the U.S. already have.”

    Do you mean the white man? After all, its a white man’s government, controlled by the white man. We just have a Black president that’s all. And he does an exceptional job, thus far. If old man McCain and no-brainer Palin were elected, this country would be the end of it as we know it.

    “In other words welcome to the USSA”

    Do you have carpal tunnel syndrome or is typos a part of your literacy? I’m wondering if you meant the United States of America?

    “Imprison anyone who disagrees with the left,”

    Incarcerate those who engage in violence. If you’re civilized enough to have a rational hence peaceful debate/discussion(something that most wing-nut extremists lacked severely). Then what’s the point of imprisonment? You’re gonna go to jail, if you make such threats to the president. Do you know anything about dialogue?

    “Amazing how cheaply you sold the 1st Amendment.”

    I didn’t sell anything, boy. However, telling the truth can really be a painful experience for you. Why don’t you read Daemonesslisa and Donna’s comments which makes a great point.

  • Ruslan Amirkhanov

    Bill, I realize this might be hard for your mind to comprehend, being so underdeveloped and all, but the 1st Amendment is not, nor was it ever absolute. There have been and still are provisions against making threats, endagering the public, slander, libel, etc. In fact Turner has got away with a lot compared to people who made far less infractions.

  • John

    I don’t think for a minute that Turner and Hannity are “former” buddies.They are two peas in a pod.

  • Bill

    Geno said “WNs have always been a violent element in our midst.”

    Nowhere near as bad as Jews in Israel. I think we should just throw away the Constitution and rule of law. Oh wait, the Jews in charge of the U.S. already have.

    Geno also said: ”
    Under the Obama presidency, it appears to be a mass crack down on these dangerous and violent WN extremists. With all these latest arrests and apprehensions, so far–the Obama administration is living up to its word. For that, I praise the Obama administration! This is something the Bush(whack) administration failed to do–is to protect the American people. Sure, the Bush administration was keeping the foreign terrorists at bay, but they have failed to crackdown on *domestic* terrorism and extremists.”

    In other words welcome to the USSA. Imprison anyone who disagrees with the left. And somehow this is good? Amazing how cheaply you’ve sold the 1st amendment.

  • Donna

    Theres a big difference between speaking out against injustice and inciting hatred. Perhaps the biggest problem is that liberals dont kill the people who disagree with them for the most part. I think this way, if you dont want an abortion, dont have one. If you dont like gays, dont hang out with them. If you dislike the tv show, change the channel. I would never expect to make a law forbidding others to do what I dont agree with. The conservatives are cramming their crap down our throats and I hate them for it, but I am not going out and kill them, It is barbaric and anti social. I am glad we have a president who will act against these hate groups. We are sick of them all!

  • daemonesslisa

    I really don’t understand why people INSIST on thinking that stopping hate speech means that all other speech is threatened! I happen to know for a fact that nothing I say is in any danger of being suppressed. Then again, I don’t go around saying that the invisible man who lives in the sky says it’s a good idea to get rid of the mud races.

    I think these pigs realize that, indeed, much of the country wants them put away. Even if they agree a little bit, most people simply want peace and quiet and want to see neo-nazis, KKK, nativists and other white nationalists silenced (at least in public forums).

    The only people crying about Hal Turner getting busted are the racists. And, unfortunately, the free-speech absolutists.

  • GENO

    That’s only wishful thinking on your part. There is nothing remotely hateful about detesting individuals who promote murder. You’re probably paranoid as much as a common WN. I don’t blame you for being so, considering that WNs have always been a violent element in our midst.

  • Mike Sanders

    Perhaps all of your rhetoric may someday be percieved as hate and land you all in jail.

  • Chuck

    Yeah, there’s a reason why even Turner’s former buddy Sean Hannity is distancing himself from the far-right nutjob…

  • Juan Rangel

    This “dufus” shock jock ain’t very smart to begin with. Not only is it ironic is that he is the one who makes all the death threats but had to run to the police station because he believed someone that he threatened might’ve actually come looking for him. Ha ha ha

    Give someone “free speech” and they go crazy with the concept.

    Since he is an FBI paid informant, I wouldn’t doubt he is still under FBI’s employ.

  • Lassiedog

    Uh, how about arresting Randall Terry, Bill O’Reilly and those other anti-abortion terrorists for incitement, I’d be up for that.

  • Annoyed

    “It’s about time these do-good christians start getting arrested. These people absolutely cannot take what they call evil. So, give it to them. Give it to them hard and strong until they turn to us! I am sick of them.”

    Since when is someone who calls for violence and killings a “do-good” christian? Anyone who is an actual Christian, that is, adheres to the teaching of Christ and the bible would never come close to this behavior and speech. Your post makes no sense. It’s the same as calling all Muslim’s terrorists.

  • Ruslan Amirkhanov

    Janey, he’s not a “christian”. Do you even know who the hell Hal Turner is?

  • http://exaggerator.blogdrive.com/ The Exaggerator

    From a discussion on this same topic on RawStory.com, I noticed some comments suggesting that Mr. Turner’s arrest may want to be but the beginning of a wider campaign against right-wing hatemongering on TV and talkback radio.

    And IIBC, the FCC’s purview does not extend (for the moment) to cable/satellite TV networks, nor to online radio and TV.

  • JaneyJane

    It’s about time these do-good christians start getting arrested. These people absolutely cannot take what they call evil. So, give it to them. Give it to them hard and strong until they turn to us! I am sick of them.

  • http://welcomebacktopottersville.blogspot.com jurassicpork

    Inciting injury? He was inciting death. Are they plea bargaining already before he’s even been arraigned?

  • GENO of 1492

    “the police tricked him into coming to the station, by telling him about a possible death threat against him.”

    Just like a Wolf tricking a rabbit to come out of its hole.

    Under the Obama presidency, it appears to be a mass crack down on these dangerous and violent WN extremists. With all these latest arrests and apprehensions, so far–the Obama administration is living up to its word. For that, I praise the Obama administration! This is something the Bush(whack) administration failed to do–is to protect the American people. Sure, the Bush administration was keeping the foreign terrorists at bay, but they have failed to crackdown on *domestic* terrorism and extremists.

    With these latest arrests of the most bile-filled spokesholes from the lunatic fringes, is a strong message that the Obama administration will not tolerate these hategroups and their leaders gloating violence on fellow Americans!

    Hail Obama!