Gordon Wendell Kahl
Gordon Wendall Kahl was a North Dakota farmer and member of
the Posse Comitatus who died on June 3, 1983, at age 63. Kahl,
a fugitive who was charged with tax evasion and the murder of
two Federal marshalls in Medina, North Dakota, was killed by
law enforcement officers in a confrontation at a farmhouse in
the Arkansas Ozarks.
In keeping with Posse doctrines recognizing no government
authority above the county level, Kahl refused to renew his
state driver’s license in 1974. In 1977, he was charged with
tax evasion on his 1972-74 taxes, and was placed on five
years’ probation. An arrest warrant was issued for him in
March 1981 when Kahl failed to report to a Bismark probation
On February 13, 1983, Kahl killed two U.S. marshalls and
wounded three others in Medina, North Dakota, when the
marshals attempted to arrest Kahl for his probation violation.
Kahl escaped and a four-month search ensued. In June 1983,
Kahl was discovered hiding out in the Arkansas farmhouse. He
was killed in an ensuing shootout with law enforcement
officers; a local sheriff was also killed in the exchange.
Kahl has been hailed as a hero and marty among radical right
activists who see his death as evidence of a Federal
government conspiracy to deny Americans their rights. Books
and songs saluting him have been written, and shirts and
bumper stickers eulogizing him have become collector’s items.
(Anti-Defamation League, 20)
Anti-Defamation League. [Special Report] Paranoia as Patriotism:
Far-Right Influences on the Militia Movement. 1995.
Subject: Paranoia as Patriotism: Gordon Kahl