County: no comment on KKK-affiliated group’s visit because permit not yet OK’d

UPDATE @ 10:23 p.m.: "Because the permit has not been approved, it would be premature to comment on any of this at this time," Brianna Wooten, director of communications for Montgomery County, said.

UPDATE @ 6:35 p.m.:

Mayor Nan Whaley said the city of Dayton will explore whether there is any legal action that can be taken to stop the KKK-affiliated group’s request to visit the city again in September.

“Our community has already been through too much,” she said during a roughly 7-minute news conference this evening at City Hall.

Whaley said she also wants Montgomery County officials to do everything in their power to deny the permit. If the permit is approved, she said she hopes the county would pick up at least half the costs.

The city cannot afford another large expenditure like the $650,000 spent last year when the group met on Courthouse Square.

The mayor expressed anger about the permit and blamed “national rhetoric” for the group’s desire to come to Dayton again and fears what the situation will be like so close to a presidential election.

INITIAL REPORT

The KKK-affiliated group that came to Dayton last Memorial Day weekend and held an event on Courthouse Square has filed a request to come again in September.

The Honorable Sacred Knights submitted a permit application for a “public speaking” event on Sept. 5 between 1 p.m. and 3 p.m.

The group said they project for there to be “10-20+” attendees for its event, according to the application filed with the county.

“Montgomery County has received an application from the same group that came to Court House Square last year. At this time, the application has not been approved,” said Montgomery County Administrator Michael Colbert.

The city of Dayton said it spent about $650,000 on security costs related to public safety for the KKK rally last Memorial Day.

Last year, the group out of Madison, Ind., first applied for a permit using fictitious names, local law enforcement agencies and the FBI determined, according to the county.

Montgomery County had the group resubmit the application with a legitimate name. After a review and consultation with law enforcement and legal counsel, the county approved the permit by the applicant Robert Morgan, who gives a Madison, Ind., post office box address.

The Honorable Sacred Knights said the mission of its organization is to “defend white Christian American rights.”