Hatewatch

Ex-Skinhead Leader Gets 3-1/2-Year Sentence for Racketeering

The former leader of a violent racist skinhead group will serve nearly 3½ years in federal prison on a racketeering charge.

Jeremy Robinson, 37, was sentenced on Oct. 15 after pleading guilty to a felony charge of interstate transportation in aid of a racketeering enterprise, according to court documents. Though Robinson did not deal drugs, he tried to help his cousin distribute a large amount of marijuana. In court documents, Robinson acknowledged renting a car for another man to bring marijuana from Texas to Indiana. The man, a courier in the cousin’s large-scale drug business, picked up the load but failed to get far before he was pulled over by Texas police, who found 90 pounds of marijuana in the trunk. Robinson also let his cousin use his tattoo shop in Valparaiso, Ind., to receive shipments of marijuana from Texas.

Robinson was a founder of the now-defunct Outlaw Hammerskins, the group whose challenge in 1999 to the nationwide dominance of Hammerskin Nation signaled the beginning of the end of any unified skinhead movement. The Outlaw Hammerskins emerged after the Dallas-based leadership of Hammerskin Nation ordered an Indiana chapter of Northern Hammerskins to remove the “colors” (insignia) of a wayward member. Several Northern Indiana Hammerskins proceeded to beat the offender with a pool cue and threatened to burn off his Hammerskin tattoos with a blowtorch. The Dallas leaders ordered them to turn in their patches. A dozen or so of the Indiana crew left the Hammerskins to form their own renegade group, the Outlaw Hammerskins.

Under Robinson's leadership, the group forged close ties with the Hells Angels Motorcycle Club, even designing its structure, rules and patches to closely resemble the Hells Angels. Robinson also gave the moniker “Brown Eric” to Eric “The Butcher” Fairburn after pronouncing Fairburn “too brown” to be an Outlaw. (Fairburn was allowed to hang out with the Outlaw Hammerskins, however, and in 2003 he co-founded the Indiana-based Hoosier State Skinheads along with several former members of the Outlaw
Hammerskins.) Infighting caused the Outlaw Hammerskins’ demise in 2002, but not before the group had left its mark on skinhead culture by defying the once-unquestionable authority of Hammerskin Nation.

In court documents, Robinson said he joined a skinhead group in 1992 because he was upset about his parents’ divorce. The group “became his replacement family for a period of time,” according to a sentencing memo. Between 2000 and 2002, Robinson received two misdemeanor convictions for battery and one for driving while intoxicated. Tired of always being angry, he renounced skinhead life around the time the Outlaws disbanded seven years ago, the memo said. “Mr. Robinson notes that he has evolved from an angry, heavy drinking skinhead who routinely appeared in criminal court to a responsible father and businessman,” a judge wrote in another memo. The judge sentenced Robinson to 41 months in prison, 10 months less than federal guidelines recommended. As part of the plea agreement, three other drug charges were dismissed.

SPLC Senior Intelligence Analyst Laurie Wood contributed to this report.