xml:space="preserve">
xml:space="preserve">
Advertisement
Advertisement

Harford man federally charged with possessing unregistered silencer had Nazi memorabilia in his home, investigators say

A Harford County man has been federally charged with possessing an unregistered firearm silencer and investigators say they found several pieces of replica Nazi memorabilia during a search of his Forest Hill home, according to recently unsealed documents in federal court.

Blaine Kenneth Kluge, 25, of the 1900 block of Pleasantville Road, was charged after law enforcement were authorized to search his residence during the investigation of the burglary and desecration of Bel Air’s United Methodist Church in 2019.

Advertisement
Blaine Kenneth Kluge
Blaine Kenneth Kluge (Courtesy Harford County Sheriff's Office)

In September of that year, police found a swastika, a racist term for black people and an anti-gay slur had been spray-painted in an enclosed space behind the altar at the Bel Air church.

Police searched Kluge’s residence on Oct. 30, 2019, related to the church incident. In Kluge’s bedroom, investigators found a suspected homemade silencer, a replica Nazi knife, a replica German helmet bearing Nazi symbols, a ballistic vest and 2,500 rounds of varying ammunition, according to the criminal complaint filed in Maryland federal court.

Advertisement
Advertisement

The federal complaint was filed Jan. 28, 2021, and unsealed Wednesday.

No firearms were recovered in the search, but the silencer was found on top of an stand-up gun safe, which contained the ballistic vest with two loaded magazines, leading agents from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives to conclude Kluge likely had guns, according to the complaint.

“I know that people who generally possess large amounts of varying caliber ammunition will typically possess handguns and/or rifles that accommodate said ammunition,” Special Agent Moore wrote in the federal complaint. “In this instance, with ammunition for shotguns, assault-style rifles, hunting rifles, and one round of handgun ammunition, [I believe] that Kluge likely possessed firearms that were too well concealed for investigators to find during the search.”

Bel Air police investigators brought the homemade silencer to the ATF, which determined what it was, and ran a query of the federal firearms database, which did not show any items registered to Kluge, the documents state. By law, a legal silencer must be registered with the National Firearms Registration and Transfer Record database.

Advertisement

If convicted, Kluge faces a maximum of 10 years in federal prison.

On Sept. 14, 2019, Bel Air police officers responded to the United Methodist Church on Lindwood Avenue for a burglary alarm when they discovered the vandalism inside. A small organ pipe was also taken.

Surveillance video obtained by police showed two individuals climb to the roof of the church around 2:22 a.m. Sept. 14 by climbing up a garbage dumpster and an electrical box attached to the building, then entering the church through an unlocked roof hatch, according to charging documents filed in state court.

Investigators used surveillance video from a number of businesses around Bel Air, including Harford Bank and 7-Eleven, from earlier that night to identify two suspects wearing similar clothing and having similar features to those shown on church surveillance, where the two attempted to cover their faces, according to the court documents.

Kluge faces 24 charges related to burglary, theft, destruction of property, and racial and religious harassment from that incident, according to electronic court records. He was initially held without bond in 2019, but was later allowed to go free on $15,000 bond. The case is still ongoing. A second person was also charged in the church incident.

Kluge is not being held on the federal charges, according to the documents.

Federal court records do not list an attorney for Kluge and a phone message left with the attorney representing him in the state case was not immediately returned.

Attempts to reach Kluge at phone numbers associated with his Pleasantville Road address were unsuccessful.

Recommended on Baltimore Sun

Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement