New York Times article on New Carlisle extremist brings condemnation

Published: Sunday, November 26, 2017 @ 2:21 PM
Updated: Monday, November 27, 2017 @ 12:39 AM

NYT reacts to Nazi sympathizer story

The New York Times published a long article this weekend about a New Carlisle man with avowed Nazi leanings, and some readers are saying the article seeks to make white-separatist leanings seem ‘normal.’

The story examines a 29-year-old welder and New Carlisle resident, Tony Hovater. The Times author writes that he met with Hovater and his wife at a Huber Heights Applebee’s restaurant, dined on turkey sandwiches with him at a Panera Bread and visited the couple’s home.

RELATED: Read New York Times story ‘A Voice of Hate in America’s Heartland

Hovater expresses sympathy with Nazism and white separatism. The story quotes him as saying of Adolf Hitler “I think he was a guy who really believed in his cause. He really believed he was fighting for his people and doing what he thought was right.”

The article noted the books Hovater has on his bookshelf and recounts his ideological journey from “leftist” to “ardent libertarian” to “fascist activist.”

“He is the Nazi sympathizer next door, polite and low-key at a time the old boundaries of accepted political activity can seem alarmingly in flux,” New York Times Reporter Richard Fausset wrote in a story that appeared online this weekend. “Most Americans would be disgusted and baffled by his casually approving remarks about Hitler, disdain for democracy and belief that the races are better off separate. But his tattoos are innocuous pop-culture references.”

RELATED: Groups like the KKK preach white power but shun ‘hate’ label

Reaction to the article was swift. Some readers took issue with the story’s tone and general approach, which seems to dwell on Hovater’s low-key mannerisms, his cats, his fondness for “Seinfeld,” rather than his actual views.

RELATED: NYT accused of normalizing white nationalism in ‘Nazi Sympathizer’ profile

“What’s problematic about the story, ultimately, is not that it humanizes a man with repugnant views — he is, of course, a human,” said an article on the web site “Quartz.” “It’s the lack of any explanation to the reader of why exactly this story exists, and what the writer expects the reader to glean from it. Without that we have, essentially, a puff piece about a Nazi sympathizer.”

RELATED: NYT responds to criticism over story

Ezra Klein, a former Washington Post columnist and co-founder of, tweeted: “The problem with this article isn’t that it’s about a Nazi but that it doesn’t add anything to our understanding of modern Nazis. Of course racists shop at supermarkets and play in bands and enjoy Seinfeld and own cats. That evil is also banal is not new.”

“This article does more to normalize neo-Nazism than anything I’ve read in a long time,” tweeted Nate Silver, founder of the data-crunching web site

RELATED: The problem with the NYT profile of Nazi sympathizer

Other readers blasted the Times for linking to web sites that sell swastika armbands and for normalizing “white supremacy.”

In a companion piece — “I Interviewed a White Nationalist and Fascist. What was I Left with?” — Fausset himself expresses some dissatisfaction with his story’s tone and laments that he couldn’t answer more fully questions about how this local man came to embrace his views.

“What prompted him to take his ideas beyond his living room, beyond the chat rooms, and on to Charlottesville, where he marched in August alongside allies like the neo-Confederate League of the South and the Detroit-based National Socialist Movement, which bills itself as ‘America’s premier white civil rights organization?’” he wrote “Where was his Rosebud?”

RELATED: Atlantic article looks at racism in region

“I still don’t think I really found them,” Fausset says of his failure to find meaningful answers.

Lee Hannah, a Wright State University political science professor, doesn’t believe the Times article answered any meaningful questions.

“And that is very problematic,” Hannah told this news outlet. “If there’s any value in this article, it is in reading the quotes of Mr. Hovater and see that he holds naive and uninformed views on the realities of fascism and historical monsters like Adolf Hitler.

“Any person schooled in history should be equipped to challenge his views. However, many will see that the reporter’s deferential treatment of his subject provides more of a platform for these views, rather than a condemnation,” Hannah added.

Glenn Duerr — a Cedarville University associate professor of international studies who has studied far right movements both in Europe and in the United States — said he believes he sees what the story was trying to accomplish, offering a perspective on a “young couple” who traffics in certain circles.

“It gives the sense of an average person in a group like this … it speaks to a new generation of people belonging to hate groups, alt-right groups, etc. As portrayed in the media, most people assumed that this (view) was dying out,” Duerr said.

But he thinks the article failed to give a sign of the breadth and spread of hate groups. And he doesn’t appreciate it when the media “cherry-picks” certain people for profiling in stories like these.

“I have to say, this is a very small minority, living on the fringe in general,” Duerr said. “Sitting in Ohio and the greater Dayton area, it’s offensive as well … the great majority of people living in the greater Dayton area are honest.”

In a response to readers Sunday, a Times editor said the story was one that needed to be told. 

“We recognize that people can disagree on how best to tell a disagreeable story,” wrote Marc Lacey, a Times national editor. “What we think is indisputable, though, is the need to shed more light, not less, on the most extreme corners of American life and the people who inhabit them. That’s what the story, however imperfectly, tried to do.”

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Convicted Warren County child rapist gets 15 years to life in prison

Published: Tuesday, April 24, 2018 @ 9:04 PM
Updated: Tuesday, April 24, 2018 @ 9:57 PM

Warren County child rape mug
Warren County child rape mug

David Randall King, 58, was sentenced Tuesday to life in prison with parole eligibility after 15 years in a child rape case where he was the caretaker. 

King, of Pleasant Plain, in the Warren County village of Harlan Twp., was convicted by a county jury in March on two counts of rape and one count of gross sexual imposition. Both are felonies. 

County Prosecutor David Fornshell, in a prepared statement released Tuesday afternoon, said that from January 2014 to October 2015, King sexually assaulted a (then) 5- to 6-year-old girl he was a caretaker of at the time. 

After the assaults, he discouraged the child from telling anyone and told her she "wasn't brave enough to tell anyone." 

OTHER LOCAL NEWS: Woman arrested for child endangerment

Fornshell said the crimes came to light in May 2016 when the child told her foster parents about the assaults. They, in turn, reported the crimes to Warren County Children Services. 

"We often hear the word 'courage' overused when describing everyday actions. In this case, a nine year-old girl sat in a courtroom in front of a judge, 12 jurors, the attorneys, and everyone else in that audience, with her rapist looking right at her, and described in exact detail what he did to her,” Fornshell said in the statement.

“THAT is courage," he said.

Got at tip? Call our monitored 24-hour line, 937-259-2237, or send it to

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Prescription drug take back day opportunity for local residents

Published: Tuesday, April 24, 2018 @ 8:09 PM

drug take back day opportunity for residents
Eric Risberg/AP
drug take back day opportunity for residents(Eric Risberg/AP)

This Saturday, April 28 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m, the Dayton Police Department will participate in the Drug Enforcement Administration's National Prescription Drug Take Back Day.

This day gives residents the opportunity to help prevent drug abuse, theft, and accidental poisonings by ridding homes of potentially dangerous expired, unused, and unwanted prescription drugs. 

On National Drug Take Back Day in October of 2017, Americans turned in more than 912,000 pounds of prescription drugs. 

OTHER LOCAL NEWS: Woman believes to be victim of slingshot shooter

The drug drop-off is free and anonymous, no questions asked, but note that it is pills or patches only - liquids, needles, or sharps cannot be accepted. 

There will be five drop-off sites around the city of Dayton; 

**City of Dayton Safety Building - 335 W. Third St. 

**Central Patrol Operations Division - 248 Salem Ave. 

**East Patrol Operations Division North - 417 East Helena St. 

**East Patrol Operations Division South - 2721 Wayne Ave. 

**West Patrol Operations Division - 951 Washington St. 

If you are unable to bring in your used, unwanted, or expired prescription drugs, the five Dayton sites will also have a drug drop-off box available for use Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. 

For more information or to find additional drop-off sites, go to

Got at tip? Call our monitored 24-hour line, 937-259-2237, or send it to

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Woman believes she was victim of shooter who uses slingshot

Published: Tuesday, April 24, 2018 @ 7:08 PM
Updated: Tuesday, April 24, 2018 @ 7:33 PM

Woman believes she was victim of shooter who uses slingshot

Nicole Miller was driving through Dayton on US Route 35 East when she heard her window shatter. 

This past Friday afternoon, Miller was driving home with her son from downtown when she heard a loud and shattering noise. 

She pulled off of 35 to check her vehicle where she found her whole window to be shattered out and completely gone. 

OTHER LOCAL NEWS: Driver killed in multiple-vehicle accident

Miller thought she got hit or something fell on the car, but after filing a report with Dayton Police, she realized it could be a slingshot that fired a ball bearing at her vehicle. 

This is where the projectile struck Nicole Miller's minivan. (Mike Campbell/Staff)

According to NewsCenter 7's Mike Campbell, this isn't the first time an accident has happened like this on US Route 35 in Dayton. 

Back in February 2018, two similar incidents also occurred, totaling to at least four that have been reported. 

Anyone with information about these attacks using a suspected slingshot, please call Mike Campbell at NewsCenter 7.

Got at tip? Call our monitored 24-hour line, 937-259-2237, or send it to

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Arcade is definitely happening, developer says: ‘We’re way too pregnant’ 

Published: Monday, March 05, 2018 @ 6:22 PM
Updated: Friday, April 27, 2018 @ 4:12 PM

A rendering of what the Dayton Arcade will look like after proposed renovations.
A rendering of what the Dayton Arcade will look like after proposed renovations.

It’s the words some people have waited nearly three decades to hear: The Dayton Arcade is going to reopen.

The project is not in doubt, says Cross Street Partners, the project’s lead developer: It’s definitely happening.

RELATED: 8 things you probably never knew about the Dayton Arcade

Though previous proposals to revitalize the arcade fizzled out, Cross Street Partners has never had a project progress to this point and not finish, said Bill Struever, principal of Cross Street Partners.

“We’re way too pregnant,” said Struever.

PHOTOS: A look back at the Dayton Arcade

Last week, this newspaper broke the news that Miller-Valentine Group, one of the largest commercial real estate developers in the region, has pulled out of a project to create new housing in the Dayton Arcade, electing to take a back seat from efforts to revitalize the famed complex.

RELATED: Miller-Valentine withdraws from Dayton Arcade project

But two big players in urban redevelopment — Cincinnati-based Model Group and St. Louis-based McCormack Baron Salazar — have signed on as partners on the arcade, and Struever says they are better suited for the work.

Model Group and McCormack Baron Salazar are “powerhouses” in tax credit investments and new market or historic reuse projects that have large extensive experience completing large and complicated projects, he said.

LATEST: Miller-Valentine remains tied to the Arcade, CEO says

There are always things that could still go wrong with the arcade project, Struever said: Like any project, tenants can pull out, leasing can hit a snag and construction can face delays.

But the arcade is headed toward a closing on financing in July, with construction beginning soon after, he said.

“Things changed with Miller-Valentine — that’s unfortunate — but we roll with it and we have a terrific team,” Struever said.

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Miller-Valentine Group has withdrawn from the housing component of the Dayton arcade. The company said it will be involved in the leasing of the commercial component and continues to work with Cross Street on multiple capital raising initiatives.

The departure has not signficantly impacted the project, except the partners’ plans now include expanding the arts component of the arcade and modifying the mix of units on the residential side, officials said.

Some amenity space in the basement of the Fourth Street building will be turned into artists’ studio space.

Model Group had a lead role in transforming the Over-the-Rhine (OTR) neighborhood in Cincinnati from a riot-damaged wasteland, featuring vacant and crumbling buildings, into one of the hottest destinations in the Queen City.

RELATED: 7 of Dayton's most haunted spots

In the 2000s, the company helped clean-up the neighborhood, which struggled with blight and crime, by restoring 73 historic buildings and creating 383 units of affordable, “high-quality” housing.

Since 2006, more than 175 new businesses have opened in the neighborhood.

Model Group’s investment in Over-the-Rhine alone is north of $200 million. The firm has completed more than $500 million in development in Ohio, Kentucky and Indiana.

RELATED: Where is the last fragment of NCR’s famed underground Dayton tunnel system?

The Model Group has been one of the most active historic tax credit developers and general contractors in the state the last 15 years, said Bobby Maly, principal of the firm.

McCormack Baron Salazar developed the Landing Apartments located at 115 W. Monument Ave. in Dayton.

The project, which opened in the 1990s, turned the downtown YMCA tower into about 59 apartments as well as townhouses and apartments between West Monument and the Great Miami River. There are 233 apartments in total.

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McCormack Baron Salazar has developed 195 projects in 46 cities in 26 states and U.S. Territories, including 21,290 housing units and 1.2 million square feet of commercial space, with development costs of $3.9 billion.

The company has completed 9 projects in Ohio, resulting in 928 apartment homes, investing $165 million.

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