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Fargo family disavows son who was at white supremacist event

The white nationalists carrying torches on UVA's campus Friday night. (The Cavalier Daily)

FARGO, N.D. (AP) -- A North Dakota family has disowned an adult son who attended a gathering of white supremacists that turned violent over the weekend in Charlottesville, Virginia.

Pearce Tefft says in a letter to The Forum newspaper of Fargo that he and his family "loudly repudiate" the "vile, hateful and racist rhetoric and actions" of his 30-year-old son, Peter Tefft. He says his son isn't welcome at family gatherings until he renounces his "hateful beliefs."

"I, along with all of his siblings and his entire family, wish to loudly repudiate my son's vile, hateful and racist rhetoric and actions," Tefft wrote in the letter. "We do not know specifically where he learned these beliefs. He did not learn them at home."

The son, Peter Tefft, told KVLY-TV in Fargo on Monday that he didn't want to say much about his family's denunciation.

While he denied his father's account about him once joking about fascists throwing people into ovens, he acknowledged that he did make a joke about ovens. He called it "a way to get under people's skin."

Tefft says there’s a movement on the horizon.

“We feel that there’s going to be a new civil rights era, and this time it’s going to be a pro-white one,” Tefft said.

Tefft's nephew, Jacob Scott, issued a statement that read in part:

"In brief, we reject him wholly – both him personally as a vile person who has HIMSELF made violent threats against our family, and also his hideous ideology, which we abhor. We are all bleeding-heart liberals who believe in the fundamental equality of all human beings. Peter is a maniac, who has turned away from all of us and gone down some insane internet rabbit-hole, and turned into a crazy nazi. He scares us all, we don't feel safe around him, and we don't know how he came to be this way. My grandfather feels especially grieved, as though he has failed as a father."

And in a Facebook post wrote, "Peter, if you are reading this, PLEASE CHANGE YOUR NAME IMMEDIATELY. You are bringing shame and ignominy on your whole family, and causing a great deal of heartbreak and distress for all of us."

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