Thursday, October 09, 2003


Police infiltrate peace group:

He was the quiet guy. The one who came to Peace Fresno meetings, always sitting in the same spot, taking notes but never taking part in the discussions. For two months, ending in May, he sat through planning meetings, passed out anti-war fliers and went to rallies. He said his name was Aaron Stokes. When asked about his job, he said he was independently wealthy.
Members of Peace Fresno now say he was Aaron Kilner, an undercover sheriff's detective who died in an off-duty motorcycle accident Aug. 30.

Fresno County Sheriff Richard Pierce would not say whether Kilner attended meetings, but he said Peace Fresno "was not and is not the subject of any investigation by the Fresno County Sheriff's Department."

Pierce said his department "does not have any reports, files, rosters or notes on Peace Fresno or its meetings."

However, in a four-paragraph statement issued Thursday, he defended his department's legal right to send undercover officers to community meetings.