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Neo-nazi escapes prison for planned machete attack on Pride event

Neo-nazi escapes prison for planned machete attack on Pride event

Ethan Stables

Convicted white supremacist Ethan Stables has received an  indefinite hospital order for plotting to launch an attack on a British pub’s gay pride event. This means he will be detained in a psychiatric hospital indefinitely.

Stables was found guilty on terrorism-related charges at Leeds Crown Court in February of this year. Prosecutors charged him with planning to launch a machete attack on the New Empire pub in Barrow, Cumbria, in June 2017.

He was arrested 23 June after what police believe was a final reconnaissance visit to the pub before his attack. Stables was diagnosed with Asperger’s Syndrome prior to his arrest,

Stables, aged 20 at the time of his arrest, had posted messages about the planned attack on his social media. This included posted photos of a machete he had bought.

Ethan Stables poses with a Nazi flag
Ethan Stables poses with a Nazi flag (Photo: Greater Manchester Police)

Prosecutors described him as a ‘white supremacist’ who had a ‘deep-seated hatred’ of gay people.

‘I’m going to walk in with a fucking machete and slaughter every single one of the gay bastards,’ he is reported to have posted on far-right social media pages.

One of Ethan Stables' Facebook postings
One of Ethan Stables’ Facebook postings (Photo: Facebook)


‘Gays look nicer on fire’

At his trial, the jury was shown a video of Stables saying ‘gays look nicer on fire’ as he burned a rainbow flag.

Stables had denied the charges and claimed he was just boasting in an effort to try and impress right-wing friends. During his trial, he also said that he’d had sexual experiences with men and is bisexual.

He said in court he was scared to reveal his sexuality because his parents would be ‘disgusted’ and ‘ashamed’.

He told the jury: ‘I am disgusted and ashamed at myself for what I said. I just wish I could turn the clock back. I’m sorry.’

Besides the machete, police found knives and an axe at Stables’ home. They also say he had researched ways to make a bomb.

Stables’ godfather Phillip Loveless, who is gay, said he did not believe Stables, to be homophobic.

‘I felt he did go off on paranoid fantasies. He would get very fixated on certain ideas,’ he said.

‘On one level it seemed totally bizarre (when he was arrested) but on another level we had all been waiting for something to happen.