MILLVILLE — Former white supremacist Joseph Bednarsky is accusing a white pride group in Massachusetts of harassment because it is allegedly posting his personal information on the Internet.
Bednarsky resigned from his position as the self-proclaimed imperial wizard of the Confederate Knights, Knights of the Ku Klux Klan, on March 29. Now he says a “white hate group” in New England, called North East White Pride, is targeting him because he abandoned the hate group subculture. Bednarsky filed a harassment complaint against Robert O’Donovan, who Bednarsky said is the administrator and owner of the group’s Web site, in Millville Municipal Court on Jan. 15.
Bednarsky said the Web site, www.newp.org, included his personal information, including his address, for about a year.
“They’re not doing that so people can shake my hand,” he said. “They’re doing it with an intent to intimidate me.”
O’Donovan sent an e-mail to The Daily Journal Jan. 22, stating he did not receive “any mail, electronic or otherwise, from Mr. Bednarsky.” He stated the local resident is trying to get public attention.
“He’s done it for years with various media outlets, from claiming to be in the Klan, to claiming to be a born-again Christian, and now claiming to be against racism,” O’Donovan wrote.
Bednarsky said O’Donovan wrote him an e-mail and said he was not harassing Bednarsky but would remove the posts. O’Donovan did not return e-mail or phone messages on Monday. The Web site forum is only open to registered members, and it could not be determined whether the allegedly threatening post had been removed. An attempt by a Daily Journal staffer to become a member of the organization was unsuccessful.
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Bednarsky said the forums on the Web site are still visible to members, and will follow through with the harassment claim because O’Donovan ignored his requests until he filed action against him. His court date is Feb. 21.
Bednarsky said he had a “change of heart,” which compelled him to leave the Klan. The Klan was “a big mistake in my life,” he said, noting it resulted in criminal records and an isolated life away from diverse groups of people.
He joined the Klan in 1986. He started the Confederate Knights in 1992 when he was 18 years old. The group reportedly has 100 members in New Jersey.
He is currently living with a girlfriend and declined to disclose his current address for his safety.
But the former Klansman is not afraid to speak out against white supremacists, he said.
“I didn’t hide when I was in the Klan, and I won’t hide now that I’m out of it,” he said. The organizations are dangerous, he added. “I know what they’re capable of.”