'Powerful' white supremacist leader shot dead in his home

One of America's most powerful white supremacist leaders has been shot dead in his home, it emerged today.

David Lynch, described as a major figure in America's underground racist movement, was shot along with his 33-year-old pregnant girlfriend in their Sacramento home early Wednesday morning.

It was reported that an 'army' of police bristling with weapons arrested a man at gunpoint outside a petrol station yesterday in connection with the case.

But police today confirmed there were no suspects and no one was being held in connection with the shooting.

The killer is believed to have entered 40-year-old Lynch's Citrus Height house at 4:00 am yesterday, shooting the skin head dead and wounding his girlfriend in the leg.

Police said they found was also found her in the hallway with a gunshot wound to the leg.

She was taken to a hospital and was expected to survive.

A third adult and a teen who were also inside the home at the time were not injured.

Speaking to CBS news, local gang expert Lieutenant Milo Fitch said the American white supremacist movement would be reeling from the death of one of its most powerful leaders.

He said:'Right now he's one of the most well known and influential figures in the white supremacist movement.

'This is a significant event in the white supremacist world - it will send shock waves.'

Described as a very powerful and charismatic man, Lynch aimed to stop in fighting among the country's disparate supremacist groups and bring them together.

He was associated with two of the nation's most prominent hate-group leaders, William Pierce of the National Alliance of West Virginia and Tom Metzger of White Aryan Resistance.

Lynch worked for the American Front, a national body of skinhead groups committed to 'preserving the white race' in America.
Leader: David Lynch was a prominent member of skin head group American Front

Leader: David Lynch was a prominent member of skinhead group American Front

He later became leader of the Sacto Skins, one of the oldest skinhead gangs in the country.

As word of his death spread, tributes to Lynch sprang up on white supremacy websites across the internet.

One such website, White Revolution, had a picture of Lynch with the words 'Hero, Patriot and Friend' written underneath.

On another popular white supremacist message board, one member wrote: 'Farewell Brother. Your name is now etched in the Book Of Martyrs.'

Tellingly, another poster writing under the name ChrisNoble said: 'I hope that that the scum that murdered you is subjected to Skinhead justice in some horrific way. Im just sick over this loss... RIP..'

Another wrote: 'He was an amazing man and left behind too many people.

'His beautiful daughters, fiance and unborn child. Plus countless friends and acquaintances. He was a true friend, if ever there was one.'

According to friends and local police, Lynch saw it as his job to try and unite the different skinhead groups under one banner.

In 2006 Lynch sent Christmas cards with the message, 'Have a very Skinhead Xmas' to hundreds of supremacists around the country.

Pictured on the card was a half-eaten cookie next to a bottle of bourbon, a shot glass etched with a death's head and stockings hung by the chimney with care.

In the fireplace, as if descending from above, were two black combat boots with blood-red laces.

Also in 2006 Lynch led a large skinhead rally in Westwood, California.

Nearly 100 skinheads from gangs in Arizona, California, Nevada, Oregon, and Utah joined forces to demand the release of the surviving members of The Order - a 1980s white supremacist gang suspected of involvement in the murder of Jewish talk show host in Denver.

According to The Southern Poverty Law Centre in 2010 there were 1002 'hate' groups active in the U.S.

This is a staggering rise from the estimated 602 such groups in 2000.

The two most notorious groups are:

Ku Klux Klan, neo-nazis

Klan groups in the U.S. increased significantly in 2008, from 155 chapters to 186. It is broken down into smaller sub units, with the Brotherhood of Klans Knights of the Ku Klux Klan (BOK) one of the fastest growing, with 17 new chapters added in 2008.

Fanatics who broadly follow the example set by Adolf Hitler's Nazi party. There are around 300 different groups including the two largest groups - American National Socialist Workers Party and the National Socialist Movement.

Other white supremacist groups include: the Hammerskin Nation Volksfront, Blood & Honour American Division, Atlantic City Skins and the American Front, as well as violent biker gangs.

Bill Roper, head of Arkansas-based White Revolution said: 'He was the kind of guy who could and did get along with everyone.'

There are fears his death could lead to violent revenge attacks from other skin head groups.

According to anti-hate body the Anti Defamation League (ADL), Lynch took over leadership of the American Front in 2002.

His greatest achievement, according to the ADL, was to connect with other white supremacist groups across the country.

His reach even extended to Canada.

The ADL said Lynch had been an active in the skinhead movement since the mid-1980s.

He apparently became involved with the American Front while living in Florida in the early 1990s before moving up the ranks to become the Front's 'eastern states chairman'.

It is reported he then moved to Sacramento, California, and became involved with the group’s West Coast activities.

He also allegedly involved himself with other California racist skinhead groups, most notably the Sacto Skins, a Sacramento-based racist skinhead group with a history of violence, as well as the Sacramento chapter of the neo-Nazi National Alliance.

On its website the American Front describes itself as 'a collective of highly motivated racialists of European descent, striving to establish an autonomous homeland for American whites, dedicated to securing, advancing, and defending the sacred blood of our glorious ancestors at all costs.'