Crime - Sacto 911

Sacramento police probe leaflets targeting Muslims, Latinos in midtown Sacramento

Sacramento police are investigating racist leaflets left overnight on the windshields of cars in midtown.

Denise Calderon, a community activist, said she awoke to find the message directed against Muslims and Hispanics on vehicles around her apartment at 26th and J streets.

“It basically gives a green light to assassinate Muslims and Latinos in our community,” Calderon said.

The letter ends with the sentence: “If you have not secured a body dump-site, do so now! Kidnap, rob, torture for information and execute all Muslims and Latinos. Leave no survivors.”

“I've been living here six years, we have all kinds of crazy, but this is a different level of crazy,” said Calderon.

The letter is signed Greg Withrow, co-founder and president of the Aryan Youth Movement-White Student Union. His attempts in the 1980s to form a chapter while a student at American River College prompted school officials to obtain a restraining order to keep him off campus.

He has a history of opposing celebration of the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday. For several years in the 1980s, his group marked the day by distributing racist papers to homes in Sacramento.

He eventually renounced his legacy of hate. However, in 2005, sheriff’s deputies in Butte County linked him to hate literature distributed on the city of Paradise doorsteps.

Attempts to reach Withrow were not successful on Tuesday. A phone number for Withrow at an address in Quincy was disconnected.

Sacramento police said they do not know if Withrow is behind the distribution or making of the leaflets. However, officers are looking into whether he has any involvement or if someone else is involved.

“The fliers contained some hateful speech and appeared to be promoting a white supremacist group,” said Sacramento police spokesman Officer Matthew McPhail.

The department is treating the incident “with the seriousness it obviously deserves,” McPhail said.

Calderon said she removed all the leaflets she could find from cars in her midtown neighborhood.

“It makes me very angry because this was left overnight, so our kids saw this before going to school,” she said.

Calderon commended Sacramento police response to the incident. Officers arrived quickly to take away any other leaflets and begin an investigation.

“They found more on other streets,” she said. “They were speaking with businesses to try to get surveillance video. I just want to thank them.”

Bill Lindelof: 916-321-1079, @Lindelofnews