[Ben Klassen] was also looking for a worthy successor. [Tom Metzger] says Klassen repeatedly courted him to take the reins, but he declined because "there were some problems. It's a church to start with, and I wouldn't want to be allied with a church." Klassen then made several missteps in choosing the next Pontifex Maximus. First, there was the announcement that Rudy (Butch) Stanko, a Colorado-based felon, had been chosen. Stanko, who had been convicted of selling tainted meat to schools, wanted to relocate the COTC to the Rocky Mountains, but Klassen opposed the move. So Stanko declined the offer. Then there was discussion in May last year that COTC Rev. Charles Altvater, a Baltimore pizza-delivery man, would take over. But Klassen again changed his mind. That decision proved perhaps a wise one: Six months later, Altvater landed in jail for attempting to bomb a police officer's home.
Most locals didn't know that McCarty had moved the COTC to Niceville until July, when he was arrested on a drunk-driving charge following a COTC bash and after the organization made national news following the federal bust of Los Angeles skinheads. The COTC has no place of worship in Niceville, but there are two large warehouses that hold thousands of dollars' worth of merchandise-books, T-shirts, stickers and other paraphernalia that the COTC sells. A small core of White Berets handles security and helps with COTC mailings, McCarty says.
It's clear that during his short tenure McCarty has tried to bring some structure to a loose-knit organization. He is checking COTC records, making sure members have paid their $30 "donation" and a $25 annual subscription to Racial Loyalty. "Twenty years ago as a small religious movement just starting out we had more money coming in then (sic) going out. Today we have become so huge that our outgoing postage alone, would fed (sic) a small country," reads a letter from McCarty to COTC members, asking them to pay their fair share. Without Klassen's money, he says, the group is losing about $4,000 a month. McCarty claims to draw no salary and adds that the COTC "brings in" only about $24,000 a year.