Frazier Glenn Miller Jr. said his motive for killing three people outside two Jewish centers in a Kansas City suburb last year was simple: Jews have too much power and must be stopped.
Never mind that none of the victims, including a boy, were Jewish.
"I had no criminal intent. I had a patriotic intent to stop genocide against my people," Mr. Miller, a former senior member of the Ku Klux Klan, said in court on Friday.
Miller, who is also known by his given name, Frazier Glenn Cross Jr., told the court that Jews have committed genocide against white people and control both the media and Wall Street. He said he felt a compulsion to take action after he researched what he described as the demise of the white race.
He rested his case after testifying in his own defense. On Monday, jurors are set to hear closing arguments in the case. Miller could be sentenced to death if he’s convicted.
Although extreme, Miller’s case highlights simmering anti-Semitism across the United States, including on college campuses. In a study released in March, the Anti-Defamation League reported a 21 percent increase in the number of anti-Semitic incidents in 2014 (912) compared with the year before (751).
“While the overall number of anti-Semitic incidents remains lower than we have seen historically, the fact remains that 2014 was a particularly violent year for Jews both overseas and in the United States,” ADL National Director Abraham Foxman said in a statement.
The Christian Science Monitor’s Mark Guarino reported in the aftermath of Miller’s attack that the Missouri man was well known to law-enforcement officials.
[Miller] has been entrenched in the hate movement for at least four decades, according to the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC), a nonprofit civil rights organization in Montgomery, Ala., which tracks hate group activity. Before his involvement in the hate movement, he served in the US Army for 20 years, which included two tours of duty in Vietnam and 13 years as a member of the Green Berets.
The SPLC has argued during the past decade that Miller represents a new kind of figure in the hate crime movement because he often seeks publicity. He created his own website, ran for state and federal office in North Carolina and Missouri, and published a 2002 autobiography.
Miller admitted to killing a 14-year-old high school student and her grandfather outside the Jewish Community Center of Greater Kansas City, as well as a woman outside a nearby Jewish retirement home in April 2014. He said he did not learn that none of the victims were Jewish until six days after the attack.
"Of course, I was devastated," he testified on Friday. But he added that he believed his adult victims were accomplices of Jews by associating with them.
This report includes material from the Associated Press and Reuters.