Skinhead leader believed killed in Calif.

March 3, 2011 at 4:57 PM
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SACRAMENTO, March 3 (UPI) -- Authorities say a man shot to death near Sacramento is believed to be David Lynch, a hate-group leader who aimed to unite skinhead gangs against minorities.

Police did not release the name of a man found with gunshot wounds to his head and torso Wednesday inside a house in Citrus Heights, Calif., but Lynch is listed as an owner of the home and the Southern Poverty Law Center said its law enforcement sources had confirmed Lynch was the victim, The Sacramento Bee reported

A man detained Wednesday afternoon as a "person of interest" was also not identified but law enforcement sources told the Bee the individual had recently been fired by Lynch.

A 911 call at 4 a.m. Wednesday of shots fires brought officers to the home where they found a man dead in the bedroom and a 33-year-old woman with a gunshot wound in the leg in a hallway of the house.

The unidentified woman was taken to a local hospital and was expected to survive, police said.

Lynch was the founder of the hate group American Front and more recently a unifying force working to bring together skinhead groups throughout the West, and expert on the borderline world of hate groups said.

"He really was a force in the skinhead world," said Brian Levin, director of the Center for the Study of Hate & Extremism at California State University, San Bernardino.

"The fact that he's dead is a blow to the skinhead movement," Levin said. "He was one of the survivors. Instead of flaming out, he really grew a base and really marketed the skinheads."

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