He wanted a race war. Instead, Michigan man gets 20 years in prison.

Justen Watkins is the leader of The Base, a pro-Hitler movement that advocates for a race war against non-white people

click to enlarge Justen Watkins is the self-proclaimed leader of the white supremacist group The Base. - Washtenaw County Sheriff's Office
Washtenaw County Sheriff's Office
Justen Watkins is the self-proclaimed leader of the white supremacist group The Base.

The leader of a white supremacist group was sentenced to 56 months to 20 years in the slammer for terrorizing a Dexter family, the Michigan Attorney General’s Office said Thursday.

Justen Watkins is the self-proclaimed leader of The Base, a pro-Hitler movement that advocates for a race war against non-white people with the goal of using violence “to overthrow the existing social and political order,” according to the Anti-Defamation League.

Watkins and Alfred Gorman were charged in October 2020 for terrorizing a family in Dexter. The men targeted what they mistakenly believed was a home owned by Daniel Harper, a podcaster who combats white nationalism on “I Don’t Speak German.”

The home was owned by a man with the same name, but not the podcaster.

In September 2019, a U.S. Army soldier in Kansas was arrested on accusations of providing instructions online about how to build bombs to burn down Harper’s house.

“I refuse to allow domestic terrorists to incite violence against our residents and communities,” said Nessel. “I am proud to work alongside law enforcement agencies at the local, state and federal levels to safeguard the public from these serious threats and gratified to see justice served.”

Watkins was also sentenced to 32 months in prison in May for conspiring to train for a civil war. In that case, Watkins, Gorman, and Tristan Webb broke into the vacant Michigan Department of Corrections Camp Tuscola annex and Tuscola Residential ReEntry Program in Caro in October 2020 and stealing state-issued clothing from one of the jails.

Prosecutors allege they were scoping the site as potential training grounds for “hate camps,” which is the name the group gave its paramilitary firearms training exercises.

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About The Author

Steve Neavling

Steve Neavling is an award-winning investigative journalist who operated Motor City Muckraker, an online news site devoted to exposing abuses of power and holding public officials accountable. Neavling also hosted Muckraker Report on 910AM from September 2017 to July 2018. Before launching Motor City Muckraker,...
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