OVERLAND PARK, Kan. (April 14, 2014) Police in Kansas aren't saying it officially, but a jail official says the man held Monday in connection with three shooting deaths is a well-known white supremacist and former Ku Klux Klan leader.
The attacks occurred Sunday at a Jewish community center and Jewish retirement complex near Kansas City.
Frazier Glenn Cross faces a preliminary charge of first-degree murder, the official said.
A doctor and his 14-year-old grandson were among the dead, family members said.
The U.S. Justice Department prosecutors will investigate whether federal hate crimes were committed in the shootings, Attorney General Eric Holder said.
In a statement Monday, Holder said he has instructed the department to provide all available support to state and local authorities to determine whether the shootings outside Kansas City involved federal hate crimes law.
The attorney general says the senseless acts of violence at two Jewish facilities are all the more heartbreaking because they were carried out on the eve of Passover.
Holder says the Justice Department will do everything in its power to ensure justice is served in the case on behalf of the victims and their families.
Speaking Monday at an Easter prayer breakfast at the White House, President Barack Obama said the fact that Sunday's attack in Kansas came as Jews prepare to celebrate Passover and Christians prepare for Easter makes the tragedy "all the more painful."