Obstreperous neo-Nazi Bill White is a free man after spending 11 months in custody awaiting federal trials in two states. His freedom comes at a cost, including staying off the Internet where in the past he has been a serial poster of threats to individuals far and wide. A judge in Roanoke, Va., granted a $25,000 bond for White last Friday, while setting several conditions.
In addition to the Internet ban, White was placed on home electronic monitoring, and he can leave his premises only to meet with his attorneys or attend to his business as a landlord of rental homes in Roanoke, where he lives. He also had to surrender his guns and undergo mental health treatment for what psychiatrists have described as a histrionic and narcissistic personality disorder.
White founded the American National Socialist Workers Party in 2006 after quitting another neo-Nazi organization, the National Socialist Movement. He filed for bankruptcy last year, and subsequently was indicted, first in Chicago, then in Roanoke.
In the Chicago case, White was charged with obstructing justice after publishing personal information on the Internet about the foreman of a jury that convicted white supremacist Matt Hale in 2004. While not actually urging that the foreman be harmed, White did publish the man’s home address, phone numbers and other personal information about the “Gay, Jewish, anti-racist juror.” He wrote that the juror “played a key role in convicting Hale.”
After his arrest, White was held without bail. While he was in custody, he was indicted in Roanoke on unrelated charges. A judge dismissed the Chicago case in July after concluding that his actions were protected by the First Amendment. He was then transferred to a holding facility in Roanoke to await trial — scheduled for Dec. 9 — in that case. A judge there granted him bail after a psychiatrist who evaluated White said that he doesn’t pose an imminent threat to the community.
White is charged in the Roanoke indictment with multiple counts of threatening people online, by e-mail and by telephone, as well as attempting to prevent court testimony through threatening letters sent to black tenants in a housing dispute. The government contends that, among other things, White wrote that Holocaust survivor and author Elie Wiesel “should be afraid to walk out his front door” because of his “Holocaust lies.” He allegedly said that Canadian civil rights lawyer Richard Warman “deserves to be killed,” and if Leonard Pitts, an African-American Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist were killed, “I wouldn’t shed a tear.” White also wrote that if he had the time, he could begin “picking off” the staff of Intelligence Report, the quarterly magazine published by the Southern Poverty Law Center. It’s expected that he will rely on a First Amendment defense again, just as he did in Chicago.