- The Washington Times - Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Minuteman co-founder Chris Simcox, the focus of allegations in an Arizona divorce case that says he threatened to kill his wife, their three children and any police who came to protect them, says he will defend himself in court and “not in the court of public opinion.”

Responding to reports that bounty hunters are looking for him so an order of protection for his wife can be served, Mr. Simcox said he and his wife, Alena, are scheduled to appear in court later this month and “only then” can the order be served.

Mr. Simcox, 49, told The Washington Times in a rambling e-mail sent through Carmen Mercer, a longtime friend and also a top Minuteman Civil Defense Corps (MCDC) official, that his wife will be required “to give up tons of discovery evidence that will answer a lot of questions” and give him an opportunity to challenge the order in court.

The petition for the order states that Mr. Simcox threatened his wife and their children with a loaded handgun, saying he would kill them and any police officers who came to their aid. The order demands that Mr. Simcox not contact his wife or children, that he stay away from their home and that he surrender his firearms to the Scottsdale Police Department.

Fugitive Recovery Services of Arizona, a state-licensed company that tracks bail jumpers, locates fugitives and assists in the recovery of missing assets, said it was hired by Mrs. Simcox, 30, to locate her husband so the April 16 protection order could be served. The order was signed by a magistrate in Superior Court in Phoenix.

In court documents, Mrs. Simcox said her husband of four years threatened her in November with a gun he “repeatedly pointed at me, saying he was going to kill me and my kids and the police.” She said the ordeal lasted six hours, during which she locked herself and her children in a bedroom until he passed out.

Afraid for her safety, the documents say, she did not call police. She said he “was waiting by the door for the police to come, with a gun pointed at me.” In a separate filing, she said Mr. Simcox got drunk on their wedding anniversary in August, loaded a revolver and, with his children present, asked her to shoot him. It says that when she said no, he said “he would shoot the entire family and cops.”

Mr. Simcox, in his e-mail, wrote that he was “under no obligation” to accept the order of protection, which he described as “maliciously defamatory.”

“It is their burden to find me and serve me. No charges have been filed against me, no warrant for my arrest and no police agency is looking for me,” he wrote.

On his Web page, Mr. Simcox said he was “compelled … by a divine power” to create the Minuteman movement but the effort to do so led to his “falling short in all my relationships, most notably my duty to my wife and family.” He said his primary duty now was to “get my whole person behind my nexus of love, my feelings, my thoughts, my actions - my God and my family come first.”

In his e-mail, he said he was not in hiding and denied, as his wife suggested, that he was armed and dangerous.

“Now really, what a hoot,” he said.

Mr. Simcox co-founded the Minuteman movement in April 2005 along with California businessman Jim Gilchrist. Over the next year, a number of Minuteman leaders and volunteers began to question the whereabouts of hundreds of thousands, perhaps millions, of dollars in MCDC donations, challenging the organization’s leadership over financial accountability.

Many of the group’s most active members said they had no idea how much money had been collected or how it had been spent. Several top lieutenants either quit or were fired by Mr. Simcox. MCDC disbanded in March.

One of those who was fired was Bob Wright, former MCDC deputy executive director, who described Mr. Simcox’s recent legal problems as “sad.”

“One can’t let the shortcoming of this pathetic wretch erase the reality that he was instrumental in bringing the scourge of the illegal alien tsunami to the consciousness of the nation,” Mr. Wright said. “He is to be commended for that and pitied for [the] personality disorder that has brought him to such shame.”

Mr. Wright, who helped form the Patriots’ Border Alliance, a Minuteman splinter group, said he was hopeful “we will soon hear of an official investigation into the disposition of the millions of dollars donated to MCDC for support of the Minuteman operation.

“Perhaps the shame of his behavior will lead him to do the right thing,” he said.

Ex-Minuteman organizer Don Wooley said that while Mr. Simcox is “no longer much of a story, he should receive credit for bringing our insecure borders to the attention of the American people.” He said for all of Mr. Simcox’s shortcomings, “he raised the alarm in 2005. No one else did.”

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