Defense Calls Judge as Witness in Metzger Trial

A judge who witnessed a rally by white supremacists held shortly before a 1983 cross-burning was ordered Thursday to testify in the trial of former Ku Klux Klan Grand Dragon Tom Metzger and three others.

Defense attorneys believe the testimony of Van Nuys Municipal Judge Michael Luros could undermine charges of unlawful assembly filed against the defendants.

Prosecutors have alleged that the white supremacists were armed with crude billy clubs and were bent on racial violence and intimidation when they set three huge wooden crosses ablaze in Lake View Terrace. Attorney Kevin Avery, who represents defendant Brad Kelly, said Luros was on a “ride-along” with Los Angeles Police Foothill Division officers on Dec. 3, 1983, when they were called to a white supremacists’ gathering attended by counter-demonstrators from the Jewish Defense League.