Deadly Aryan Circle Prison Gang Faces Heat
Detectives in the town of West, Texas, believe that members of the neo-Nazi prison-based gang Aryan Circle carried out a pair of brutal attacks on the same Latino man last August.
Originally, it was reported that two of the 10 men and women who swarmed and assaulted the 28-year-old Latino victim twice in the same night had claimed they were all members of Aryan Nations, a completely different neo-Nazi group. But West Detective Kimberly Lucien told the Intelligence Report that 35-year-old Stephen Ray Chapman, who was arrested for allegedly leading the attacks, was confirmed to be a member of Aryan Circle while he was being processed into the McLennan County jail, where he was held in lieu of $1 million bond.
Investigators have since uncovered evidence that all the alleged attackers, including several juveniles, are Aryan Circle members or associates. Aryan Circle was founded in 1985 by white inmates in the Texas state prison system.
Chapman's arrest was his eighth in the state of Texas. Prior charges included burglary, robbery, drug possession and making terroristic threats. In the latest case, Chapman told police the Latino man was targeted after he made offensive remarks to a teenaged girl in Chapman's company. The 28-year-old victim was hospitalized for almost a week.
According to Aryan Circle literature, the gang's primary objective is to violently promote white nationalism "both in prison and in the world throughout." Last August, two Louisiana law enforcement officers were killed in a gunfight with a member of the gang who also was a suspect in the murder of two teenagers in Houston.