COLBERT, Okla. — Former Colbert interim Police Chief Bart Alsbrook said he believes his white supremacist past would not have negatively affected his ability to do his job as the city's police chief, and would have had a positive impact on his role.
“I can tell a thug when I see one and can usually tell when they lie,” Alsbrook said in a text message to the Herald Democrat Thursday. “But (my past would have) absolutely no negative bearing.”
Alsbrook also said he didn't think he had ever encountered a white supremacist while doing police work in Colbert.
The Colbert City Council accepted Alsbrook's resignation from the police chief role Friday and appointed assistant chief David Peterson to the post.
Alsbrook's resignation followed the discovery of ties to neo-Nazi and white supremacist organizations and websites by KXII last weekend. On Tuesday, two documentaries from 2003 and 2005 surfaced that feature Alsbrook talking about his beliefs and connections to the organizations.
In August, the Southern Poverty Law Center updated its Hate Map, a listing of hate organizations, following white supremacist protests in Charlottesville, Virginia. The update included a listing for ISD Records, a site that sells neo-Nazi memorabilia and music, and placed the organization in Denison, where Alsbrook lives.
KXII reported public records for ISD and NS88 Video, another website that sells racist memorabilia, show the websites as registered to Alsbrook. Following questions by the television station, the sites were taken down and are still offline.
Alsbrook denied owning the websites to KXII and claimed a group of skinheads stole his wallet in the 1990s at a heavy metal concert and have been using his name for neo-Nazi and other related websites since.
The two documentaries — titled “Skinhead Attitude” and “White Terror” were filmed and released by documentarian Daniel Schweizer — showed Alsbrook describing his involvement with hate groups affiliated with the Blood & Honour movement. The existence of the documentaries was first reported by the Herald Democrat.
In “Skinhead Attitude,” Alsbrook said that the reason he became a skinhead was because he had originally been a member of the Republican Party and always had what would be considered a right wing point of view on politics and the social environment.
Alsbrook said he broke ties with the hate groups after the turn of the century.
“Left all that racist stuff behind me 15 years ago,” Albrook said via text message to the Herald Democrat. “Been helping people ever since. I have a clean record so I volunteered to be an unpaid police office a few years back.”
During the documentary, “White Terror” Alsbrook is seen mailing and distributing DVDs and CDs of hate music and material from his home in Denison.
The SPLC described Blood & Honour as a network of neo-Nazi music promotions that was founded by Ian Stuart Donaldson, frontman for the band Skrewdriver, who is also the namesake for ISD records. A related group, Combat 88, is often described as the militant wing of Blood & Honour, Alsbrook says in the documentaries.
During the text interview Thursday, Alsbrook said it was time that ultimately lead him to break away from the organizations.
“I think a person should question their views every day,” he said.
Following the city council meeting Friday, Colbert officials declined to comment on Alsbrook, the Colbert Police Department and Peterson. The new police chief said he was unable to give an interview, but noted he has been a certified peace officer since 2005 and has previously worked in Antlers, Oklahoma, and Pushmataha County. Peterson was hired as assistant police chief a few weeks ago when the council appointed Alsbrook police chief.
Herald Democrat Executive Editor Jonathan Cannon contributed to this story.
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