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The Art of the Racist Steal

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Eastern Washington is a very special place, filled with white supremacists who are very scared of all the non-white people. Let’s just say that it was eastern Washington where Mark Fuhrman had a radio show after the OJ trial. It’s that kind of place. This creates a situation where a racist can grift other racists:

The foreboding letter was signed by a man calling himself “Alessio Don De Grande.”

Pointedly referencing his membership in a shadowy criminal enterprise, he demanded $250,000 in cash within 15 days. The couple in eastern Washington state who found the typed, two-page missive on their car windshield on Feb. 28 were informed they would be killed and their property would be seized if they didn’t pay up. Their daughter and her family in California could expect a none too friendly visit, too, the note said.

It was one of several threatening letters that members of a right-wing militia group in Stevens County, Wash., would report receiving that month. De Grande, whose name was signed at the bottom of each, claimed to be involved with a mysterious group based outside the United States, and heavily insinuated that it was a Mexican cartel.

But in reality, authorities now say, the sender was actually James “Russell” Bolton, the militia’s own leader. On the group’s website, he had once warned that murderous cartels were infiltrating the United States, just another example of the “subversive political insurgency” that threatened to overtake the country.

In recent months, Bolton allegedly tried to take advantage of the fears that he had stoked. Officials believe that he posed as a made-up cartel boss himself so that he could extort vast sums of money from his followers.

The Stevens County Sheriff’s Office, which Bolton once sought to lead, is now on the lookout for him. Though a nationwide warrant for his arrest was approved on April 22, the Spokesman-Review reported last Thursday, the 51-year-old is still at large.

Back in 2010, Bolton had mounted an unsuccessful write-in campaign to be elected sheriff of Stevens County, which is located in the rural northeastern corner of Washington state, bordering Canada. At the time, he described himself as a Marine Corps veteran and the owner of a custom woodworking business. Vowing that protecting citizens’ “liberties and freedom” would be his first priority, he gained the endorsement of Richard Mack, the former sheriff of Graham County, Ariz., and a leader of the constitutional sheriff’s movement, whose adherents pledge not to enforce federal laws they believe are unconstitutional. Ultimately, Bolton came last in a four-way primary with about 13 percent of the vote.

I’d like to say it is astounding that these people are this stupid to believe that they were personally being extorted by Mexican cartels, but, no it’s not astounding at all. This is definitely a root for injuries situation. I wish all of these people all the worst. Incidentally, this image I used for this post is from the elected coroner of another eastern Washington county. The whole area is awful.

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