Recent violence in Charlottesville, VA points to the growing number of white supremacy and nationalist groups in the United States.

According to the Southern Poverty Law Center — the number of hate groups jumped 17 percent in 2016 to more than 900 groups.

Most of the members of those groups who descended on Virginia were from other states. 

KELOLAND News looks at what’s labeled a “hate group” in South Dakota and uncovers another one not on the list, but still very close to home. 

Hate groups have always had a presence in the U.S., but the demonstration and resulting violence in Charlottesville has many members saying their time has come to emerge from the shadows,  including former KKK leader, David Duke.

“We had every right, this was shut down.   When they violate that right they violate the very essences of what it means to be an American,” Duke said in Charlottesville August 12.  

According to the Southern Poverty Law Center, South Dakota is home to 6 hate groups, including the Midland Hammerskins, and American Clarion in Rapid City. The alternative right website has stopped publishing, but its Facebook page is still active.  Anti-Muslim groups Keep South Dakota Safe PAC in Aberdeen and ACT for America in Rapid City are also on the list.  Keep South Dakota Safe is defunct, but ACT tells KELOLAND News its on the list because its political views are different than SPLC and that ACT has “zero tolerance” for hate. 

The Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, with a compound in Pringle, also makes the hate list for its intolerance of minorities, other religions and gays.  

PzG inc is also on the South Dakota hate list.  PzG is a business selling Nazi paraphernalia..  Michael Jay Kelly and his wife Linda  have run the business out of their Rapid City home since 2002. Kelly did not return our phone calls. 

PzG’s website says it is: “dedicated to preserving the history of the largest war in human history by selling reproduction WW2 war stock without “politically correct” distortions for all students of Adolf Hitler, Nazi Germany, WWII and Third Reich history since 1995.”

One group, that’s not on the list, that KELOLAND Investigates found is the Creativity Movement in South Dakota lead by Nick Chappell who lives in  Aurora, near Brookings.  Chappell calls himself a “reverend” of the Creativtity Movement.  

The white supremacist group’s tenant is “race is religion.”  

According to a North Dakota report, Chappell was a rising star in the American Nazi party before becoming a leader in the Creativity Movement.  

One photo shows one of the meetings the group has held in Brookings.

In that North Dakota report, Chappell said his organization owned a restaurant, gym and banquet hall where they gathered. I spoke with the Register of Deeds office in Brookings County and could not find property of that type in Chappell’s or the Creativity Movement’s name. The group is also reportedly preparing for a holy war and stockpiling food, water and protective gear. Chappell did not return our emails requesting an interview.  

We asked Attorney General Marty Jackley if law enforcement is monitoring these groups in South Dakota.

“We have different task forces that keep an eye on these types of issues as it pertains to public safety. My position as attorney general is there is no room for hate crimes or activity that hurts property or people,” Jackley said. 

Thousands of counter-protesters marched through Boston over the weekend in response to a right-wing free speech rally, resulting in 33 arrests.  However, unlike Charlottesville, it was a mostly peaceful event.

This article has been revised to reflect the following correction:
Misspellings were corrected in this story.