Mike Echols

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Walter Harlan "Mike" Echols (April 1, 1944 – January 10, 2003) was an American author who wrote several books, mainly dealing with child sexual abuse. His books include I Know My First Name Is Steven, which chronicles the story of Steven Stayner, and Brother Tony's Boys, which tells the story of Brother Tony Leyva, a Pentecostal revivalist preacher and pederast.

Echols infiltrated NAMBLA and wrote of his experience in I Know My First Name is Steven. He published the names and addresses of 80 members on his website. Mike was one of the people who worked on the film Chicken Hawk: Men Who Love Boys.[citation needed]

Echols was known for researching the Internet for pedophile chat rooms and forums. There he would post comments considered rude and harassing, and often publicly "outed" pedophiles' and ephebophiles' real identities. Echols created a website called Better a Millstone, for the purpose of organizing his attacks against pedophile and ephebophile activism. After his death in 2003, Better a Millstone survived for a year and eventually folded. The site's name is a biblical reference:

It were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and he cast into the sea, than that he should cause one of these little ones to stumble.
—Luke 17:2

Better a Millstone was a non-profit organization, incorporated in Las Vegas, with the president eventually being Bridgette McGinley and the treasurer LJ Lantz.

Mike Echols died in 2003 at age 58 in the Monterey County Jail in California from a pulmonary embolism.[1] He was in jail for failing to appear in court after being charged with indecent exposure, among other crimes.[2][3]


  1. ^ Staff and wire reports (2003-01-14). "Inmate death blamed on clot: Jail Officials Say Echols Had Been in Poor Health; Man was found dead in his cell on Friday". The Salinas Californian. 
  2. ^ "Anti-child-pornography crusader sentenced for violating probation". Monterey County Herald (California). 2002-12-13. 
  3. ^ Joe Livernois (2002-12-03). "Crusader Echols in custody on indecent exposure charge". Monterey County Herald (California).