One People's Project
Members of two neo-Nazi groups, including the oldest and most violent organization in the state of New Jersey, have been arrested on federal hate crime charges stemming from the New Year’s Eve 2011 assault on three Middle Eastern men in Sayerville, NJ after a “meet and greet” white supremacist event.
Atlantic City “Skinheads” (ACS) member Chris Ising, 31 of Watertown, NJ and Michael Gunar of the Aryan Terror Brigade (ATB) were arrested early Tuesday by federal authorities after a year long investigation on indictments charging him with conspiracy to commit a hate crime, as well as the actual commission of a hate crime assault, in violation of the Matthew Shepard and James Byrd, Jr., Hate Crimes Prevention Act. According to the FBI, Ising was holding a New Year’s Eve “meet and greet” white supremacist event at his former residence in East Brunswick, N.J. At 11:30, the pair drove to an apartment complex in Sayerville with the express purpose of assaulting random, non- Caucasian individuals. While there, they located and attacked three Middle Eastern men, shouting anti-Arab slurs, brandishing a knife, utilizing brass knuckles and injuring two of the victims.
|Chris Ising wearing a tribute shirt to ACS leader Bryan Bradley.
Atlantic City “Skinheads” was founded in the 1980s by a number of neo-Nazis, including Bryan P. Bradley, who led the group until he was struck and killed by lightning in 2011 while working on the new Revel Casino in Atlantic City. The group has a long history of violence, which includes the 2005 carjacking an murder of a black woman by one of their members, Walter Dille, who is currently serving a life sentence for the crime, and the 1993 beating death of a 75-year-old Black man in Atlantic City. Despite the history of the group he founded, Bradley was still honored in April by his local union with the inclusion of his name on an Atlantic City memorial dedicated to workers who have lost their lives on the job. Although the ceremony was attended by at least 20 ACS members, very few, if any, media outlets have acknowledged Bradley’s associations to date. Outrage, however, did prompt the cancellation of a benefit in his name for injured workers at the Golden Nugget Casino in September, which was organized by his brother, comedian Butch Bradley.
The Aryan Terror Brigade is a fairly new organization, whose reputed founder and leader Josh Steever of Flemington, NJ, has had several run-ins with the law across the country. He made headlines when he married Danielle Swayze, the niece of the late actor Patrick Swayze, and the daughter of Don Swayze, who played the werewolf Gus in the HBO show True Blood. That marriage has reportedly since ended. Steever posts on Facebook and Twitter under the name “Hatchet ATB”, and has been promoting a “Rudolf Hess March” for August 17, 2013 in Washington DC that is being co-sponsored by ATB and another that group, the Supreme White Alliance. Two members of the SWA have been convicted and are serving time for plotting to kill President Obama.
In October, Aryan Terror Brigade member Kent McClellan of Florida, one of 13 neo-Nazis in that state arrested in a federal sting operation, pled guilty and is currently serving probation for taking part in paramilitary training for he believed was an impending race war. On Monday, he posted photos of himself on Facebook with head injuries he said he sustained from falling out of a car.
Ising made his initial court appearance on Tuesday before U.S. Magistrate Judge Cathy L. Waldor in Newark federal court, while Gunar will be before the same judge on Wednesday. The case moves to the federal court in Trenton afterwards.