White supremacist relocation worries local law enforcement <BR><BR>
When Dennis Mahon, leader of the White Aryan Resistance, announced his intent on moving to Kingman, the news drew concerns and warnings from local law enforcement officials.
Mahon, from Oklahoma, reportedly met Timothy McVeigh, the former Kingman resident who bombed the federal building in Oklahoma City in 1995, several times at gun shows.
Mahon said he is considered a supporter of McVeigh.
Mahon said he plans to move his organization to Mohave County, partly to counter the illegal immigration in the state, according to an article appearing in the Arizona Republic earlier this week.
If he moves to the county, the 50-year-old white supremacist and avowed enemy of the federal government will not go unnoticed by law enforcement and civic leaders.
McVeigh, who lived in the Kingman area off and on beginning in 1994, is scheduled to be executed June 11 for the 1995 bombing.
McVeigh was convicted and sentenced to death for the April 19, 1995, explosion that ripped apart the Alfred P.
Murrah federal building and killed 168 people, 19 of them children.
Mohave County Sheriff Tom Sheahan said his detectives and deputies would keep track of Mahon and his followers' movements if they move to the county.
"A person like that won't be welcome here," Sheahan said.
"We'll keep an eye on him.
We have ways of doing that but we won't make them known.
The local FBI agents will also find it interesting that he is moving here."
Sheahan said the reputation that Kingman and its surrounding area is a bastion for anti-government is undeserved.
"People get an idea that certain areas are like this and it is not true," he said.
Kingman police Chief Larry Butler said his department would also keep a close eye on Mahon if he moves within the city limits.
"If he lives in the city limit, every time he blows his nose someone will let us know," Butler said.
"We'll definitely know what he is doing."
Butler said Mahon is used to big cities where he can hide easier than in Kingman.
With Mohave County being larger than several states, Butler thinks Mahon will stay out in the rural parts of the county.
People back east do not understand the size of the county and the remote rural locations where groups like his can hide, he said.
"If he comes here, he hasn't done his homework," he said.
"I don't think this community would welcome him at all.
This community doesn't support hate."
Butler also said that the racist movement in the Phoenix suburb of Gilbert, where Mahon plans to focus his group, is over estimated as it is here in this county.
Beverly Liles of the Kingman Chamber of Commerce said that Mahon's influence is also overrated.
"People shouldn't fear this or make a big deal about this," she said.
"If he did come here, he wouldn't have the support here."
Mayor Les Bryam said if Mahon moves to this area it would probably be in the remote areas of the county not in Kingman itself.
He does not believe there is an organized hate group in Kingman but if Mahon moves here that may change.
"If he obeys the law, he'll be treated like any other citizen," Bryam said.
"But anyone I know wouldn't like to see that element come in with the problems it causes."