Sat, Jan 02, 2010 - Page 7 News List

US detention officer fired for belonging to the KKK


A prison guard who acknowledged being a member of white supremacist group the Ku Klux Klan has been fired for belonging to a subversive or terrorist organization, a violation of the county agency旧 code of ethics.

Wayne Kerschner, an Alachua County Sheriff旧 Office corrections officer, was fired on Tuesday following a 10-month internal investigation.

The investigation revealed that Kerschner applied online for membership to the United Northern and Southern Knights of the Ku Klux Klan a year ago, paid US$30 a month for access to a members-only Klan Web site and that the group did a thorough background check that included his credit history before allowing him to join.

The Klan has 堕xtremely high standards,� Kerschner told investigators, according to an administrative investigation report released on Thursday. 荘hey do a complete criminal background check on everybody.�

During the internal probe, Ker貞ch要er told investigators the Klan never asked him for information about the jail or the sheriff旧 office and that he never let his membership interfere with his job.

He said he would never get involved with anything criminal and wouldn急 ever jeopardize the sheriff旧 office. He said he viewed the Klan as a religious or political organization.

戦 don急 let it interfere with my job,� he said, according to the report. 戦 don急 let it interfere with my personal judgment call on anything like that. I mean, I think I am a pretty dang fair officer.�

Kerschner told authorities that he blogged regularly on a KKK Web site, attended two rallies in Tennessee and was an officer of the United Northern and Southern Knights of the Ku Klux Klan. He said his wife was also a dues-計aying member.

Kerschner gave some details into how he was inducted into the Klan in a process called 嘆aturalization.� He said he was blindfolded during the ceremony and was touched on the shoulder with a sword after taking an oath. He said he was on probation for a month before he could have full access to the Klan Web site, which offered information on Klan handshakes and the different colors available for Klan robes.

Kerschner told investigators he was sorry for getting involved with the Klan.

戦f I could erase time, I would,� Kerschner said.

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