Klan Leader Sentenced to Six Months

Associated Press/November 1, 2001

South Bend, Ind. -- A leader of a Ku Klux Klan group has been sentenced to six months probation for harassing a newspaper reporter by telephone.

Railton Loy, who says he is a minister of the Church of the National Knights of the Ku Klux Klan, also was fined $150. He had faced up to six months in jail and a $5,000 fine for the misdemeanor charge of telephone harassment.

Loy, 63, left a message for South Bend Tribune reporter Carol Draeger on her work voicemail after she helped cover a May 5 Klan rally in South Bend. Loy said that his family was threatened after his name was used in news coverage and that, ``I sure wanna find out where you live.''

Draeger testified that she felt frightened when she heard the message, in part because she was the only reporter whose name Loy had mentioned during the rally.

In his testimony, Loy blamed Draeger's articles for the harassment he said he's received, including shots fired at his house window and van, and threatening e-mail and phone messages.

During his sentencing Wednesday, Loy asked St. Joseph County Magistrate Brian Steinke if the court would prevent the Tribune from contacting him. Steinke said he couldn't do that.

Loy said he planned to appeal his conviction and sentence.

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