Man fatally stabbed on Furby Street former leader of Manitoba KKK

The 45-year-old victim of a fatal stabbing in Winnipeg’s inner city on Thursday was the former head of the Manitoba Ku Klux Klan.

James Edsel Tucker was previously known as William James Harcus, police say

Police taped off an area in front of an apartment building on Furby Street for their investigation. (Meaghan Ketcheson/CBC)

The 45-year-old victim of a fatal stabbing in Winnipeg's inner city was the former head of the Manitoba Ku Klux Klan.

Police were called to the 400 block of Furby Street for a serious assault around 3 a.m. Thursday. James Edsel Tucker was rushed to hospital in critical condition but later died.

Police have confirmed Tucker was previously known as William James Harcus. In the 90s, Harcus was known as the leader of the Manitoba KKK.

In 1992, the Manitoba Coalition against Racism and Apartheid and two other complainants filed a human rights complaint against Harcus and the Manitoba KKK.

They were tried in court, and following a three-day Canadian human rights triburnal hearing the judge ordered Harcus and the KKK to stop a phone line they created, where callers received messages targeting non-white races and Jews.

Police said Tucker's death was not connected to his role in the KKK.

"This incident has nothing to do with his past," Const. Jason Michalyshen said Sunday, adding investigators do not believe Tucker had been actively involved in the white supremacist movement.

Joshua Evans, 24, and Martin Archie Flett, 22, were charged with second-degree murder in connection to the stabbing.

Hotline designed to arouse hatred

The complaints to the human rights tribunal in 1992 alleged the KKK hotline — which operated in Winnipeg between May 1991 and December 1991 until police brought criminal charges — delivered messages likely to arouse hatred against people based on their race, colour, national or ethnic origin and religion.

Some of the messages directly targeted members of the local anti-racist movement, the complainants alleged.

After the criminal case against the three KKK members fell apart, in 1992 a magistrate banned all three men from owning weapons, ammunition or explosives for five years.

Police had already seized weapons from two of the men, and the court heard one of the men had met with Harcus and undercover police officers in December 1991 and discussed how to obtain weapons illegally.

Chief Magistrate Don Dowbenko said he considered the ban necessary because he believed the men could pose a threat to the public, particularly members of minority groups.

With files from the Canadian Press