One of the country's leading white supremacists was gunned down in his California home, shot in the head and torso as his pregnant girlfriend watched, police said.
David Lynch, 40, an organizer for the American Front, one of the country's oldest skinhead groups, was killed in his home early Wednesday morning. Lynch's 33-year-old girlfriend, who is five months pregnant, was shot in the leg.
Police have not identified the woman who called 911 to the home that she and Lynch shared in Citrus Heights, Calif. Paramedics took her to a nearby hospital where she is recovering.
When police entered Lynch's home they first had to step over a doormat which reads: "Come Back with a Warrant."
Soon after police responded to the 911 call, they arrested Charles Demar, 36, another white supremacist and acquaintance of Lynch. Authorities are calling Demar "a person of interest." They charged him with drug possession.
Since the 1980s, Lynch has been on the radar of law enforcement and organizations that monitor hate groups.
The Southern Poverty Law Center describes Lynch as a "clever and charismatic racist skinhead organizer whose history of racist activism dates back to the late 1980s."
Lynch rose through the ranks of California's skinhead movement, consolidating power and ultimately uniting once rival racist organizations throughout the state, as well as in Utah, Florida and Canada, according to the SPLC.
In 2005, he met with then-National Alliance chairman William Pierce, perhaps the most prominent American neo-Nazi, when Pierce visited Sacramento, according to SPLC.
In 2006, he organized one of California's largest skinhead rallies, in which more than 100 white supremacist gangs from around the country attended.
Skinheads Mourn David Lynch
The Anti-Defamation League calls the American Front one of the "oldest continuously active racist skinhead groups in the United States."
On its website the group 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."
Since his death, white supremacists have taken to the Internet to mourn Lynch.
On the Website of White Revolution, a caption under his photo reads "Hero, Patriot, and Friend."
Writing on the same site, Billy Roper, whom the SPLC calls "the uncensored voice of violent neo-Nazism," wrote: "Dave Lynch: My Friend, and one of the best men I've ever known, a hero of our people and our cause. We are in shock."