By Emory Bryan, News On 6
TULSA, OK -- Police identified a Tulsa woman killed in Louisiana during what was possibly a Ku Klux Klan initiation. 43-year-old Cynthia Lynch was shot Sunday. Her body was found Monday morning in Sun, Louisiana.
Police arrested Chuck Foster for her murder, along with seven other people on charges including obstruction of justice.
Are hate groups like the KKK still operating in Oklahoma?
Two independent watch dog groups try to keep track of Klan activity. The Southern Poverty Law Center and the Anti Defamation League both claim the Klan is still active, though they differ on how active the group is in Oklahoma.
The internet is the new frontier of the Ku Klux Klan, according to authorities, who traced the murder of Cynthia Lynch to an online long distance recruitment, followed by an in person initiation that ended in her murder.
The sheriff investigating the case believes Lynch tried to leave and was shot once. It was a clerk at a convenience store that tipped authorities to two men asking about getting blood off their clothes.
Charles Foster is under arrest for the murder. Louisiana authorities identified him as a leader of the "Dixie Brotherhood" of the Klan.
The Southern Poverty Law Center says it is unaware of any group by that name. The group tracks hate groups and lists six chapters of the Klan in Oklahoma.
None of them are in Tulsa, but several groups with similar goals are listed in Tulsa and surrounding towns.
The Anti Defamation League also tracks hate groups. That group's research indicates the Ku Klux Klan is on the rebound, but doesn't list Oklahoma as one of the states where that's happening.
The ADL lists one Klan group as being active in Oklahoma, with no specifics.
The Tulsa Police Department's gang unit reports it has records on 27 people with possible Klan ties dating from the 1980's. They have had no contact with anyone claiming Klan ties in the last six years.
Authorities in Louisiana continue to investigate the extent of Klan activity in the area which so far has resulted in eight arrests connected to the murder of Cynthia Lynch.
The Southern Poverty Law Center identifies the murder suspect Foster as the founder of the Southern White Knights of the Ku Klux Klan, a group that started in Louisiana.
They do not believe that particular group is active in Oklahoma.
11/12/2008 - Victim In KKK Death Identified