Accused Kansas Shooter In Wheelchair For Court Appearance

Frazier Glenn Miller wore a padded smock for his first court appearance.

ByABC News
April 15, 2014, 10:45 AM

April 15, 2014— -- Frazier Glenn Miller, who could face the death penalty for allegedly killing three people at Jewish centers in Kansas, made his first court appearance today wearing only what appeared to be a padded smock with his arms and legs exposed.

The 73-year-old was brought to a closed circuit booth in a wheelchair where he then stood and made his initial court appearance.

A spokesman for the Johnson County jail said the knee-length black garment worn by Miller was a "suicide prevention smock."

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The charging documents used the last name of Miller, but he was addressed as "Mr. Cross" by the judge, who set his bond at $10 million. Cross is an alias of the suspect.

He was charged earlier today with one count of capital murder and a second count of premeditated first degree murder. The capital murder charge makes him eligible for the death penalty.

The suspect has long been on the radar of anti-hate groups, such as the Southern Poverty Law Center. At a news conference on Monday, police officially classified the massacre as a "hate crime."

Prosecutors said the capital murder charge is for the deaths of William Lewis Corporon and his grandson, Reat Underwood, 14, who were gunned down outside the Jewish Community Center of Greater Kansas City, where parents and their children were gathering for a singing contest.

The premeditated first degree murder charge is for the shooting of Terri LaManno, 53, who was shot and killed minutes later outside the Village Shalom assisted living center where she was visiting her mother.

"The fact that we filed these two counts [doesn’t] mean we can’t add new charges," Johnson County District Attorney Steve Howe said."[There is a] good possibility additional charges will be forthcoming."

U.S. attorney Barry Grissom said federal charges will likely be filed next week.

Miller, who was one of the country's most prominent white supremacists in the 1980s according to two watchdog groups, was armed with at least one shotgun when he allegedly began shooting at people gathered in a parking lot.

Witnesses said the suspect, who is reported to be a former Grand Dragon of the Carolina Knights of the Ku Klux Klan yelled a Nazi salute after the shooting.

Miller served three years in federal prison on weapons and threatening communications charges, according to court records. As part of a plea bargain, Miller testified against other KKK members at a 1988 sedition trial.

After serving his time, Miller became an unwelcome figure in the white supremacist movement and was viewed as a traitor, Mark Pitcavage, director of investigative research at the Anti-Defamation League told ABC

"Ever since [he took a plea deal], most white supremacists don't want anything to do with him," Pitcavage said.

After laying low for a while, Pitcavage said Miller became active again in the past 15 years, taking his hate into the digital age.