Raw Story has a heart-wrenching piece about the ties of Frazier Glenn Miller, the white supremacist who shot and killed three people at a Kansas City community center, to a highly publicized 1987 triple murder in Shelby, North Carolina. (Kudos to Matt Comer, editor of NC's Q-Notes, who co-authored the story.)
The brutal murders created quite a sensation at the time and was one of several crimes against gays in the South in the 70s and 80s - fires at gay nightclubs and murders and disappearances of gay men - that made being out much more dangerous than it is today.
Sometime shortly before midnight on January 17, 1987, three masked men entered the Shelby III Adult Bookstore located outside Shelby, North Carolina, a business known for attracting a gay clientele. The men ordered the store’s four customers and a clerk to the floor, and then shot them, execution style, in the back of their heads. The masked intruders took cash from the register and rigged up plastic gallon jugs filled with gasoline and detonation fuses, planning to burn the bookstore to the ground.
Three men were killed in the attack and two survived.
According to the Raw Story article, Miller had, during this time, Miller "had declared war on “ni**ers, Jews, queers, assorted mongrels, white-race traitors and despicable informants,” and suggested awarding points as a kind of bounty system". Running from Federal charges surrounding Miller's organizing militia training for the Carolina Knights of the Klu Klux Klan, Miller and three other men were arrested in Ozark, Missouri in April 1987.
In exchange for a sentence of five years, Miller provided Federal investigators with testimony against a dozen other White supremacists - testimony that never resulted in any convictions.
Raw Story talked with two defense attorneys who thought Miller should have been a prime suspect in the Shelby murders. He testified against two men who and one was put on trial for the crime, but prosecutors couldn't place them at the scene.
Miller had no alibi for that night and attended a White Patriot march in Raleigh the day following the murders.
One of the defense attorneys believes the Feds "looked the other way" on the Shelby murders because of their plea deal with Miller. And he was possibly working as an informant before the murders.
“I spent of lot of time talking to the [State Bureau of Investigation] guys,” Lyons says. “Several said Glenn Miller was picked up in downtown Raleigh, I’m going to say, I don’t remember the date, a couple years before all this, before the bookstore murders. And apparently he was caught in the back seat of his car with a black male prostitute. I was told they didn’t arrest him, but the cops brought him in, photographed him and turned him loose without an arrest. That allegation had been suggested as to why Glenn Miller might have been turned by the feds. Jackson surmised that he basically became a federal asset at that time and all the things he did were used to entrap people and in their view start a shooting war.”
Raw Story contacted the Cleveland County Sheriff's office for comment, but received no response.
The murders have never been solved. Will the Sheriff's office pursue more investigation of the case to provide some closure to this brutal killing?