ACHILLE, Okla. (KXII)- Achille police chief Chirstopher Watson says he knew about Bart Alsbrook's connections to white supremacist groups, but still hired him to be a reserve officer in the police department.
"In the two years that I have known him, he has done nothing but contribute," said Watson.
Last August Alsbrook was named interim Police Chief in Colbert. He resigned a week later, after eventually admitting his past ties to neo Nazi organizations.
We reported last year Alsbrook was the Texas coordinator of a Skinhead group called Blood & Honor, a group the Southern Poverty Law Center calls an international coalition of racist skinhead gangs..
When we found Bart Alsbrook's name linked to ISD Records and NS-88 videos -- two websites that sell media and memorabilia aimed at skinheads - he claimed identity theft after skinheads stole his wallet at a concert in the 1990s.
Watson says Alsbrook wanted to leave the Skinhead groups he admitted he belonged to.
"He was involved in some kind of group then, and wanted out and the only way he figured he could get out would be to move far away," said Watson.
Alsbrook says he's declined repeated requests for an on camera interview, because
"I do not want my name associated with any hate ideology end quote." He told us via email.
Watson says Alsbrook has talked to him about trying to amend his checkered past.
"Everyone has a past, some of which they may not be proud of, of which he is not. He wishes he never had those connections," said Watson.
Watson says the Achille police department has zero tolerance for racism.
"None. None, because that is an ignorant way of thinking. So there would be no tolerance of that."