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

Texas Prosecutor ‘Involved’ in Aryan Brotherhood Investigation is Slain

By Mark Potok on January 31, 2013 - 1:18 pm, Posted in Extremist Crime

Two men, reportedly masked and dressed entirely in black, gunned down a Kaufman County, Texas, prosecutor this morning as he walked to a city courthouse. The Dallas Morning News reported that the victim had been “heavily involved” in the investigation of members of the Aryan Brotherhood.

The entire area was locked down and a search continued this afternoon for the two men who were described as having fled in a silver older model Ford Taurus. Meanwhile, KHOU-TV in Houston reported that the slain prosecutor was Assistant District Attorney Mark Hasse, a man who was said to be widely respected among jurists.

County Judge Bruce Wood said that courthouse security in Kaufman, a North Texas town of about 6,700 people about 30 miles southeast of Dallas, was always tight but not in the parking lot where Hasse was killed, WFAA-TV reported. Wood described the attack on Hasse as an “ambush,” the Dallas television station said.

The Aryan Brotherhood (AB) is a large, white supremacist prison gang that is infamous for its violence and its sprawling criminal empire, which also is highly active outside the nation’s prisons. A related group, the Aryan Brotherhood of Texas (ABT), is known to be particularly violent, and prosecutors in that state have been aggressively moving against its members for several years now.

Last November, the U.S. Department of Justice unsealed a 43-page indictment of 34 ABT members, accusing them of murders, attempted murders, conspiracies, arsons, assaults, robberies and drug trafficking. Ten could face the death penalty if convicted. A federal official said at the time that the gang’s hallmark was the use of “extreme violence and threats of violence to maintain internal discipline and retaliate against those believed to be cooperating with law enforcement.

The AB was originally formed in 1964 at San Quentin Maximum Security Prison in San Quentin, Calif., as a response to the desegregation of the prison. It was initially a kind of racially based protective association for whites, but in the decades since then the AB has grown into the largest and most violent prison gang in America, with an estimated 15,000 members. Most members are in state or federal prisons, but an increasing number in recent years have helped to build up a criminal empire that is largely directed by AB bosses who are imprisoned, some of them serving life sentences.

Several years ago, the FBI said that while AB members make up less than one-tenth of 1% of the national prison population, they were responsible for 18% of all prison murders.

In 2005, federal officials in California indicted 40 AB leaders and associates from around the country and charged them with a series of murders and other crimes. Although many of those indicted were already serving life sentences, some of them in solitary confinement, prosecutors said they were still managing to have people killed and running criminal enterprises, typically sending messages through their wives or girlfriends, their lawyers and via secret codes and invisible ink. The idea of the case was to put many of those imprisoned leaders to death, as that seemed to be the only way of stopping them. In the end, the case largely failed, in that no AB member was sentenced to death.

What follows is a list of crimes or alleged crimes attributed to apparent ABT members culled from earlier Southern Poverty Law Center reports (with thanks to Hatewatch staffers Janet Smith and Don Terry):

October 2001: In the backlash against Arab-Americans that followed the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, a Bangladeshi immigrant was gunned down while working at a Texas gas station. Mark Stroman, later convicted of the killing, was an ex-convict member of the Aryan Brotherhood (ABT) of Texas.

April 2002: Five members of ABT were arrested after a botched hit on another member resulted in an eruption of semi-automatic gunfire in a quiet Austin neighborhood. One of those arrested, ex-convict William Maynard, 31, was one of five “generals” who allegedly led the national Aryan Brotherhood. The FBI said the incident was part of a gang power struggle that had included a “string of killings” across the state.

November 2005:  Alleged Aryan Brotherhood (AB) member Stephen Lance Heard was charged with capital murder after shooting Fort Worth police officer Henry “Hank” Nava on Nov. 29. Nava was investigating Heard’s role in a major Texas identity-theft ring.

June 2006:  Three AB members allegedly stabbed to death a longshoreman in Baytown, Texas, because they wanted parts from his 14-year-old truck for a gang leader’s vehicle. In ensuing days, the three were arrested and charged with capital murder. Police also arrested eight other alleged members or associates of the gang and charged them with engaging in organized crime.

December 2007:  Dale Clayton Jameton, a ranking official of AB prison gang, pleaded guilty to the 2006 murders of a man in Mesquite, Texas, and an unnamed woman whose body has never been found. Officials say Anthony Clark was killed because he was suspected of informing, and the woman was murdered for reasons of “internal discipline.” Jameton was sentenced to life without parole.

October 2009:  A San Antonio, Texas, judge sentenced AB member Michael McCallum to 18 years in prison for beating to death a man he met at a gas station after the two had an argument about membership in white supremacist prison gangs. Security was heightened during McCallum’s trial after a swastika was discovered on a prosecutor’s car window.

October 2010:  The most infamous racially motivated murder since the civil rights era occurred in 1998, when three white men, two of them ex-cons, tied a black man, James Byrd Jr., to the back of their pickup truck with a logging chain, dragged him to death over three miles of country roads outside Jasper, Texas, and then deposited his shredded remains in front of a predominantly black cemetery. One of the ex-cons testified at his trial that he and one his accomplices had both joined the ABT for protection from black inmates while they were incarcerated. When he rejoined society, his arms were covered with Aryan Brotherhood tattoos, including one depicting a black man being lynched. “You look at his arms,” the trial prosecutor said, “and you see what’s in his heart.”

May 2011:  AB member, Brent Stalsby, 30, of Beaumont, Texas, was sentenced to life in federal prison after pleading guilty to committing a violent crime in aid of racketeering activity for murdering a fellow member of the white supremacist gang and his girlfriend in 2007 on the orders of Carl Carver, a leader in the group. Charles Cameron Frazier, 29, was sentenced on June 21 to life in federal prison for his role in the murders and on June 28 Carver was sentenced to life in prison for ordering the murders.

September 2011:  Steven Scott Cantrell, 25, of Midland, Texas, pleaded guilty to federal hate crime charges for setting fire to a predominantly black church in December 2010 in an effort to kill a disabled black man he believed lived at the church. The arson was part of a series of racially motivated arsons Cantrell committed in an attempt to gains status with the Aryan Brotherhood of Texas.

November 2012:  In one of the largest racketeering cases of the year, the U.S. Department of Justice unsealed a 43-page indictment of 34 members of the “violent, whites-only prison-based gang with thousands of members operating” in and out of prisons throughout Texas and elsewhere.  ABT was accused of carrying out murders, attempted murders, conspiracies, arsons, assaults, robberies and drug trafficking as part of an enterprise that goes back to at least 1993. Among those charged in the indictment were four senior leaders or “generals” — Terry Ross “Big Terry” Blake, 55; Larry Max “Slick” Bryan, 51; William David “Baby Huey” Maynard, 42, and Charles Lee “Jive” Roberts, 68.

  • Jg

    So all ye listen .

    Stephanie was almost right & Pablo also .

    The rest of you suck big time.

  • pablo

    Stephanie is right and no one really knows who did these crimes. Hell. According to your logic, it could have even been the Mossad or the NRA or maybe Kim over in North Korea. Don’t jump to conclusions until you really know what you’re talking about; is probably the safest advice.

  • Joe Taylor

    Well Stephanie, I was assuming there was nothing lower than these AB scumbags. I was wrong. The women that support them. Now that is some serious stinky trash. I hear Afghanistan is wonderful this time of year. You should move there.

  • Stephanie

    Before you all start condemning the ABT for this guys death, show some solid proof that they are guilty. Why would they risk their chance to beat these fraudulent charges they are being charged with right now, by ridding the world of a wretched person like Mark Hasse? They have way more important things to deal with than something that petty. You all are so quick to jump and point fingers when you don’t even have the slightest clues whether it was ABT… or a couple of young country boys….. or even a pair of black guys!! Who are you all to judge anyway? You don’t know these guys! They have families and friends too. Get off of the bull**** and quit being so quick to be hateful and judgmental toward people!! Its disgusting!!

  • Tobias A. Weissman

    Over and over these “Terrorists” think by killing those who are against them, they will still have the last say. They failed to stem the Black Movement by killing Martin Luther King JR., the same for killing Medger Evers and Malcolm X. Good will always win over evil. Why we have to endure the killing of our great leaders escapes my sense of logic.

  • Woody

    To stop hate we have to start with person at a time. To put politics a side and religion and above all skin color. Look into a persons eye’s you will see there soul.

  • Wendy

    I agree Woody. Hate is evil and is indeed a poison to the soul and a threat to everyone. My heart goes out to the family of the prosecutor, however, hate and evil will only prevail if we sit back and do nothing.

  • Aron

    Uh ‘Dan,’ these were rightwing extremists. They hate ‘leftwing parasites’ almost as much as they hate Jews.

    Now go away, little sock puppet. You need some darning!

  • Woody

    We all have to take a stand against hate. Hate is poison to the soul

  • dan

    Not even policeman is safe. These dudes will kill anyone who gets on there way. Especially liberal parasites.

  • Michael Parker

    Where is the justice department?

  • concernedcitizen

    @frazee; you have a point.

  • concernedcitizen

    I agree with you Aron. I can’t believe what is going on in this country but what’s worse is that we have a judicial system that needs to toughen up on hate groups. These men should not be allowed to run their organized crime (hate groups) from jail. That is completely insane.

    And as long as we have violent criminals such as these running around in our streets I don’t see how Obama is going to have an easy job with more gun control laws.

  • Kiwiwriter

    This is pretty frightening…Aryan Brotherhood hasn’t just killed a prosecutor and left his family devastated…they are sending a message to the entire judiciary and legal system, that no-one is safe from their vengeance.

  • http://Splc Tom Frazee

    Our prisons are schools of hate. We punish, we treat our fellow man, cruely. We are reeping what we’ve sown.

  • David Cary Hart

    More guns – more deaths.

    Assuming, for the moment, that universal background checks are imminent. That will do nothing about the tens of thousands of weapons that are already in circulation and in the hands of criminals.

    LaPierre is using circular logic. Less regulation resutls more guns circulating among criminals which means (according to Waynepoo) that we need more guns in the hands of law abiding citizens to protect ourselves from the armed criminals who wouldn’t be armed if we had more regulations in the first place.

    Well, background checks are not imminent. Bush, II missed the REAL pile of WMD – in his backyard. The carnage will continue and it will be televised.

  • Aron

    This is bad. Very, very, very bad. My heart goes out to Mr Kaufman’s family, and I hope those retrograde specimens of humanity (ha!) get whatever hell is coming to them. The bastards.