Saturday, August 18, 2012
Feds indict white supremacist couple in 3-state killing spree
A 24-page, 15-count indictment unsealed in Portland on Friday names David Joseph "Joey" Pedersen, 32; Holly Ann Grigsby, 25; "and others" in a conspiracy that included researching and gathering the names of prominent Jewish leaders and organizations in Seattle, Portland and Sacramento, Calif., to identify potential targets for elimination.
It claims that Pedersen, when he was arrested with Grigsby in Yuba City, Calif., driving the car of one of their four alleged victims, had prepared a "press release" to alert the media to the killings and their purpose. According to the indictment, Pedersen had already identified his first "Zionist" target and had obtained the gun he intended to use to commit the crime, although it does not name the alleged target.
Prosecutors allege Pedersen and Grigsby funded their white-power movement with credit cards stolen from their victims, and used their stolen cars to travel from one state to another.
Grigsby told police they shot the Oregon man "because his last name made them think he was Jewish," according to charging documents. The California victim was black.
However, Snohomish County Prosecuting Attorney Mark Roe said Friday he will dismiss the state charges against Grigsby now that the federal indictment has been issued.
Roe had already said publicly he would not seek the death penalty against Pedersen or Grigsby.
Roe said consolidating the cases under a federal racketeering and organized-crime conspiracy prosecution will prove "much more humane for everyone involved, and far more efficient" than a piecemeal approach, with each state taking its turn.
"A three-state prosecution up and down the West Coast could take a decade or more," Roe said. "I can't imagine a series of more agonizing road trips for everyone involved."
Grigsby's attorney, Peter Mazzone, said Snohomish County prosecutors had already decided not to seek the death penalty against his client, and he hopes for a similar conclusion from federal prosecutors.