State police, the county's lawyer and a Ku Klux Klan leader are debunking a flier that names a county bureau chief as a nominee for office in the white supremacist group.
"A smut campaign is what it is,"said Maryland State Police Cpl. Jerry Jankoviak. He investigated complaints from Sykesville and Mount Airy residents who received photocopies of the hand-printed fliers in late January.
"More than likely this was revenge motivated," he said. "We're satisfied that the literature is bogus in nature." The corporal said background inquiries turned up nothing to substantiate a link between the official and the Klan or its activities.
The county official named in the flier declined to comment, on advice from County Attorney Charles W. "Chuck" Thompson Jr. But Thompson also said he "found no evidence" of Klan involvement and agreed with the state police assessment that the flier was aimed at discrediting the official.
Thompson said he has known the man for more than 10 years and never has had reason to believe the bureau chief harbors racist sentiments. Thompson called the flier distribution "a tawdry event."
Thompson said the bureau chief's position in county government involves hiring and firing of department personnel, and suggested that the flier may have been the action of a disgruntled employee.
Much of the distributionof the flier was centered on South County neighborhoods, including Parrsville and Dorseytown in Mount Airy. But some were placed in employee mailboxes at the County Office Building in Westminster, Jankoviaksaid.
The hand-delivered fliers also contained inflammatory whitesupremacist statements, police said.
Roger Kelly, grand dragon for a Klan chapter in Rocky Ridge, Frederick County, said his group didnot produce the flier and that he did not think it was the work of other area Klan units, either.