A neo-Nazi and white nationalist with ties to the security company that works for musician Taylor Swift had a profile on a sexual fetish website.
Kevin A. Cottle, 35, of Tiverton, Rhode Island, a member of the Traditionalist Workers Party (TWP), posted as “Dark1976” on the sexually explicit website FetLife.com. The site is a social media gathering and meetup spot for people with specific sexual proclivities.
On the site, “Dark1976” featured nude photos of Cottle sporting nipple rings and listing himself as “Curious about bisexuality” and, among his interests were “Anal Training,” “BBW (big beautiful woman) Submission” and “Gay Sex and Male Bisexuality” along with other fetish topics.
Cottle told The Southern Poverty Law Center that the profile was set up by friends from his time in the U.S. Army.
“It’s a bunch of frigging bullshit,” Cottle said. “Army guys are notorious for that kind of thing.”
Cottle’s story is similar to what Matt Parrott, a spokesman for TWP, said about the fetish website profile.
Parrott said the organization was aware of Cottle’s profile on the website and determined after an investigation that it was a prank played by a friend and a “hostile actor.”
“We took his word for us that it was just a prank,” Parrott told The Southern Poverty Law Center. “At this point, it appears to be a harassment prank.”
Cottle said he served 17 years with a “mountain warfare unit” in the Army, but not the famed 10th Mountain Division from Fort Drum, New York, before being medically discharged in April 2016.
But, military records available through the Army Human Resources Command at Fort Knox, Kentucky, tell a more detailed story.
According to the Department of Defense Manpower Data Center, Cottle served in the Army National Guard starting in 2000 with five stints of active duty of varying lengths. His last recorded active duty status was in 2010.
And, the Rhode Island National Guard does not list a mountain unit among its detachments.
The database does not say which unit Cottle served with or where he was stationed during the call-ups. A spokesman for the U.S. Army Office of Public Affairs did not immediately respond to questions about Cottle’s service.
Cottle did not return follow up phone calls seeking to clarify details about his time in the military.
Parrott said Cottle is a “recent member” of the Traditionalist Workers Party and the organization made the decision not to dismiss Cottle from its ranks.
Cottle, who said he joined TWP in August after the deadly “Unite the Right” rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, said the pictures were sent to his wife and later hacked. The TWP investigated the profile and took no action against him, Cottle said.
Parrot said Cottle claims his wife sent the pictures to co-workers as a joke “or something.”
“I’m not fully convinced of his story, but am giving him the benefit of the doubt,” Parrott said.
The Traditionalist Workers Party is decidedly anti-gay, even including a promise to forcibly convert homosexuals and others.
Cottle has also undergone national criminal background checks in 2009 and 2015 at the behest of APG Security, a New Jersey-based company, said Amy Kempe, a spokeswoman for the Rhode Island Attorney General’s Office.