Detroit Jewish leader found on convicted killer’s hit list

The leader of a Detroit Jewish group said a Toledo man who was arrested on charges of possessing counterfeit goods and weapons kept a notebook that listed both the Jewish organization and the NAACP’s Detroit branch, drawing alarm from Detroit community leaders over the suspected neo-Nazi sympathizer’s intent.

In the weeks after the arrest of Richard Schmidt, FBI agents shared with Scott Kaufman some of the pages in a personal notebook found Dec. 21 during a search of Schmidt’s West Toledo home that made reference to the Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Detroit and listed its leaders.

Among the handwritten pages were notes that Schmidt allegedly made about the NAACP, including directions that would get him from Toledo to its Detroit headquarters, Mr. Kaufman said Friday.

Federal agents took a videotape of a 2005 national meeting of the National Socialist Movement, a white supremist group, and a national list of Jewish-owned businesses during the raid of Schmidt’s home. Authorities also raided Spindletop Sports Zone, a sports and memorabilia store at the Woodland Mall in Bowling Green owned by Schmidt, four cargo trailers that he kept in the mall parking lot, and three vehicles.

The notebook with information about the Jewish Federation and NAACP coupled with items that show Schmidt may be sympathetic to the causes of neo-Nazis, as well as the arsenal of guns and ammunition he kept have raised fears among community leaders in Detroit. Mr. Kaufman, chief executive officer of the Jewish Federation, stopped short of using “target list” for the pages in the notebook that FBI agents shared with him, but he said it is a logical conclusion that one could draw.


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