Sunday, May 31, 2015

Waco Biker Massacre: 9 Dead, 178 Arrested, Charged With Murder, $1 Million Bail, Held In Jail For Weeks, Some Need Medical Attention, No Evidence Presented Before in Court, Federal Civil Rights Lawsuit Filed


I'm getting to this story late. The Massacre actually happened on May 17th.

At first, I figured it was just a biker brawl, and it may well have been exactly that.

But that is no reason to hold 178 people in jail for weeks on end, under the charge of murder, when almost none of those people were involved in the violence. Indeed, many of them likely did not even flash a weapon.

Some of these people need medical attention:
The Southern Nevada Confederation of Clubs has stated that the jail is desperately overcrowded, that some prisoners are not being fed and that others cannot get needed medical attention. 
A week ago a Bandido named Jeff Battey had to post a $1 million bond before he could go to a Dallas hospital to have bullet fragments removed from his arm. 
Yesterday on its Facebook page, the Southern Nevada COC said it had received the following messages from “family members” of men who were rounded up in the indiscriminate mass arrests that followed the shooting deaths of nine men and the hospitalization of 17 more following a barrage of gunfire outside the Twin Peaks restaurant in Waco on May 17. 
Please Help “Third world conditions – please help!” 
“My husband still has a bullet in his chest and can’t use his right hand. He has a heart condition, has a stint and a-fib, and they are trying to change his medication. He is afraid he might bleed out in his cell.” 
“Heart meds not being disbursed. Has bullet in chest and cannot feel hand. Believes he has nerve damage but they will not treat him” 
“My brother is type 1 diabetic and is not receiving insulin. His blood sugar is 550.” 
“Meds not being distributed – takes insulin” 
“Blood pressure meds not being given” 
“No blankets or pillows. Sleeping on cold floors” 
“Husband just had back surgery and was on prescription meds for pain. Simply decided to go to the meeting to get out of the house. He was told he was being given a sleep med and instead they gave him ADHD /bi-polar medication. He has also not eaten anything for almost 10 days now since surgery”
It seems these people are being incarcerated for not telling the police what they want to hear:
So far, authorities in Waco have been oblique about how 26 men came to be shot; what part police played in the massacre, or why people who self-evidently had nothing to do with the shooting were arrested and charged with murder. 
McLennan County District Attorney Abel Reyna has intimated that the bikers are being punished for not telling police what police want to hear. 
In an interview with television station KXXV, Reyna said “I’ve heard enough about my person was a victim and most of the people were victims. Well, guess what? If they’re victims they shouldn’t have any problem coming to law enforcement and cooperating to be sure justice is done and the individuals solely responsible are brought to justice. And, through the first round of interviews we aren’t getting that.” 
The hard news in this case portrays the city of Waco and McLennan County as rogue governments that have gone mad. The Waco Tribune-Herald reports “McLennan County is spending $7,958 a day to house those jailed in the May 17 Twin Peaks shootout. 
So far, the county has spent more than $80,000 to arrest and incarcerate people who went to a brunch in Waco and then tried to avoid getting shot. 
Only two men, Battey and Christopher Stainton have made bail so far. Neither man has a criminal record. Both are required to wear an electronic monitoring device and observe a curfew while they await their day in court. As of this morning, 175 of the 177 people arrested in the vicinity of the May 17 shooting remain locked up. 
Thirty-four men have filed for a reduction in their bonds. About a score of those have bond reduction hearings set for either June 5, 12 or 19. 
Most of the prisoners haven’t filed for bond hearings because they do not yet have lawyers. 
Seventy-five of the alleged murderers have requested a public defender. 
There are only 29 lawyers in McLennan County qualified for the job. The County has 26 prosecutors.
When the story first broke, police apparently admitted that they shot at least some of those who wound up dead:
WACO, Texas — At least some of the bikers involved in a gang fight Sunday that left nine people dead and 18 injured were shot by police, authorities said. 
The violence erupted shortly after noon at a busy Waco shopping center along Interstate 35 that draws a large lunchtime crowd. Waco police Sgt. W. Patrick Swanton said eight people died at the scene of the shooting at Twin Peaks restaurant and another person died at a hospital. 
Preliminary findings indicate a dispute broke out in a bathroom and then spilled into the restaurant where it escalated to include knives and firearms, he said. There were 150 to 200 gang members inside the restaurant at the time. 
During the melee, officers shot armed bikers, Swanton said, adding that the actions of law enforcement prevented further deaths. 
It was not known if any of the nine dead were killed by police officers. Police fired upon bikers when weapons were pointed toward them, police told the Austin American-Statesman. However, amid the chaos, it wasn't wasn't clear who shot whom. 
No officers were injured, police said.
To this day, there has been no further admissions from police, no further evidence presented, no clarification from police.

This ought to be simple. Ballistics tests will show who shot whom.

When will such evidence be forthcoming?

How do police and District Attorneys justify holding 177 people in jail for murder when they can't say who was involved beyond those who wound up dead or wounded?

The good news is, yesterday, one of the bikers arrested filed a Federal Civil Rights lawsuit:
In his lawsuit, filed in federal court in Waco Friday, Clendennen said he "did not encourage or solicit any criminal activity at Twin Peaks that day." It states he was arrested "without probable cause and his motorcycle was illegally seized." 
His lawsuit names the city of Waco and the McLennen County sheriff's as well as individual officers working the Twin Peaks case. 
"It was the policy of the City of Waco, as decided and approved by their policymakers, to cause the arrest and detention of numerous individuals belonging to motorcycle clubs who were in or around the Twin Peaks restaurant at the time of the incident, regardless of whether or not there was individualized probable cause to arrest and detain a particular individual and to do so based on "fill in the name" complaints without individualized facts," the lawsuit states. 
It makes no specified claim of damages, but says Clendennen's constitutional rights were violated.
More information from Aging Rebel:
Scimitar Motorcycle Club member Matthew Alan Clendennen (above) is also suing Waco police officer Manuel Chavez, who signed the criminal complaint against Clendennen and up to 177 other arrestees. 
Chavez’ criminal complaint states that “I hereby state upon my oath that I have reason to believe and do believe that heretofore, and before making and filing of this complaint, that on or about May 17, 2015 in McLennan County, Texas, the said Clendennen, Matthew Alan did then and there, as a member of a criminal street gang, commit or conspire to commit murder, capital murder, or aggravated assault against the laws of the State.” 
Fill In The Name 
The lawsuit notes that “the identical criminal complaint used in Plaintiff Matthew Alan Clendennen’s case was used to justify the arrest of more than 100 other individuals and only the names were changed in the various criminal complaints. 
The complaint alleges absolutely no individualized probable cause to establish that Plaintiff Matthew Alan Clendennen engaged in organized criminal activity 
“At the time of Plaintiff Matthew Alan Clendennen’s arrest, the Fourth and Fifth Amendments of the United States Constitution required probable cause to arrest a citizen before the citizen’s liberty could be significantly restrained. Chavez, aided by Does 1-10 and/or Does 11-20, presented the criminal complaint to (Justice of the Peace Walter H. “Pete”) Peterson when no reasonably competent police officer in Chavez’ position could have concluded that a warrant should be issued against Plaintiff Matthew Alan Clendennen based on the allegations against him in the ‘fill in the name’ criminal complaint. 
“In addition, Chavez, aided by Does 1-10 and/or Does 11-20, intentionally withheld material information regarding Plaintiff Matthew Alan Clendennen in the criminal complaint such as the facts that he was not a member of the Cossacks nor the Bandidos, that he did not participate in any of the violence occurring at Twin Peaks and, in fact, hid from the violence.” 
The suit names 20 police officers as simply Jane or John Doe.
Clenenden is a graduate of Baylor University, in addition to being labeled a pariah for being a member of a Motorcycle club:
Clendennen is a resident of nearby Hewitt, Texas and a 2011 graduate of Baylor University. 
The 30-year-old, married father of four and employer of six “has no previous criminal record.”
Over at the Aging Rebel site, a commenter named Erkman69 made an important observation:
This whole thing sickens me. It was the clubs that kept Harley Davidson from becoming a memory when they were owned by AMF. 
Where are they? 
There were bikers that supported the bundy ranch when blm thugs threatend them with m16’s. 
Where are they? 
Bikers always show up when people need them, dammit,where are they now?
I am doing all i can to get support for the jailed bikers. Seems no one really cares, but i do. My family does, we will continue to tell all we know about this tyranny. I wish people would listen. 
First they came for the bikers…

17 comments:

Anonymous said...

It was known in the days leading up to the meeting at Twin Peaks that there was a good possibility of trouble or violence. Several rival biker gangs were meeting at the breastaurant to hash out "turf disputes."

This really is not the case of the government coming for the bikers. This is more like the case of a few people looking for trouble and then trouble finding them and their friends.

cjk said...

If these were black motorcyclists there would be 24/7 coverage over police misconduct while every major city in the country experienced riots.
Of course they would never have treated them in this manner in the first place.
If the truth is racist, then I'm a racist.

Pastorius said...

Anonymous,
Yes, perhaps.

Does that mean we should suspend Habeus Corpus?

Anonymous said...

I do not think that Habeas Corpus is implicated. If Habeas Corpus was an issue, then I would imagine the bikers' attorneys and possibly the ACLU acting on behalf of one or more of the bikers would have filed a habeas action to spring the bikers. You ask for the body before you ask for the money.

When you act in concert with others and a killing is reasonably foreseeable, then you risk being charged with murder also whether you pulled the trigger or not. To illustrate this point, three months ago in Waco, two boys were driven by a girl to an apartment in Waco. The two boys were going to rob the inhabitants and settle some old scores. One or both boys took guns. The girl is alleged to have driven them to the apartment. One of the boys shot and killed an occupant of the apartment; he was killed at the scene by one of the apartment's occupants in self defense. The other boy was injured. The girl left the scene.

The surviving boy and the girl were both charged with capital murder even though they did not pull the trigger. They acted in concert with the person who did pull the trigger. Same theory is at work in this case and that is why everyone, or almost everyone, was charged with murder.

I imagine that as the investigation continues and things get sorted out many charges will be significantly reduced and/or dropped. McLennan County cannot afford 170+ capital murder trials at a cost of approximately $1,000,000 per trial. The current situation has already strained resources even though the court process has not kicked into full swing.

Pastorius said...

So, any guy in a biker gang who showed up that day, no matter what gang, no matter whether that gang or the guy has a history of violence, all of them were conspiring to murder someone?!?

Who?

Just anyone?

And what evidence is there?

Anonymous said...

From comment @ConservativeTreehouse:
One hypothesis which explains and joins most of the various versions of events, including PD and non-PD witnesses...albeit based on rumors at this point. But this theory does tie up most versions in one plausible explanation.
It’s a given that ATF and Waco SWAT were already on scene, around the Twin Peaks, both in uniform and undercover, or concealed in vehicles.
It’s been stated in numerous accounts that a first scuffle broke out in the bathroom. Some allege that an undercover cop was wearing “false colors” into the Twin Peaks and was called out over it in the bathroom. IOW, the u/c false biker’s cover was blown. In the bathroom, it became heated, and the u/c cop pulled out his pistol, “badged up,” and tried to get out of the restaurant. Angry pushing ensues, possibly involving other brandished knives/pistols.
On the Waco PD tactical radio channel, all of the SWAT officers outside are hearing, “Officer in peril! Officer is being assaulted! Officer in trouble! Officer has weapons pointed at him! Officer needs help!”
As the little crowd (u/c cop with blown cover, surrounded by angry bikers) emerges from the Twin Peaks onto the parking lot, the already-present SWAT snipers have drawn beads on the Cossacks around the u/c false biker cop. The SWAT guys know who the officer is by a “telltale” such as a unique bandanna etc. They see knives and or guns being pointed at the u/c officer as he tries to flee the scene, his cover utterly blown.
One of the SWAT snipers perceives that the u/c cop is in immediate danger, and shoots one of the Cossacks who is holding a weapon, dropping him. After the first shot is made, it’s a case of “sympathetic shooting.” This was first discussed after the NYPD shooting of the unarmed Amadou Diallo in 1999. Basically, once ANYBODY fires a shot, all the cops will empty a magazine. “Shooting is shooting,” the brain just perceives a battle, not a one-way massacre.
So each of the SWAT snipers, firing scoped semi-auto carbines or scoped bolt guns, “takes out” one or more of the Cossacks around the “officer in danger.”
In the aftermath, the Waco PD has to cook up an alternative “gang war” story to cover their own disastrous actions, from sending in an u/c biker whose cover could be blown, to having a SWAT team on a hair trigger waiting outside, to the ensuing “sympathetic shooting” sniper massacre.
In this case, ballistics and blood trails will tell the tale. Even if the Waco PD tried to sanitize the scene, CSI-wise. Even if the Waco DA tries to strong-arm all 170 arrested bikers into signing “no lawsuit” gag agreements under threat of prison and financial ruin.

Anonymous said...

It need not be a conspiracy, which requires the conspirators to agree on an objective. There just needs to be the foreseeability that given their activities, if they were criminal to begin with, that a death could occur during the course of those activities.

Pastorius said...

That's a real stretch to say the action of 177 people was criminal in intent.

177 people went to Hooters (because Twin Peaks is the midwest Hooters) and had lunch with some sort of criminal intent, huh?

Of course motorcycle gangs are not the favorite people of law-abiding citizens. They are, often, people to be wary of.

HOWEVER,

just as the 1st Amendment protects those whose speech is not favored and it often disgusting, so Habeus Corpus and the 4th Amendment protects those who tend to be perceived as being on the edge of the law.

Pastorius said...

By the way, please explain to me what you mean by "they were criminal to begin with".

IN order for that to be true, these guys would either have to be in prison or awaiting trial on some charge other than this one.

Clearly they were not, therefore, you assertion that they must have been criminal to begin with is absurd.

Do you see what I mean?

Anonymous said...

No, I do not see what you mean. Because it was understood for weeks in advance that there was a significant likelihood of violence at this meeting. The SWAT team was not on standby just because this was a meeting of a few peaceable biker clubs.

Pastorius said...

Where is the evidence for what you are saying? You say it was understood for weeks ...

So, who understood? The Police? Who else?

I have seen not even one claim that it was understood for weeks.

I have seen the Police claim they discouraged the restaurant owner from hosting the event because they were afraid there would be trouble.

But I have not seen it claimed that it was understood for weeks that there would be trouble.

So, again, let's say it was understood for weeks by the Police and even the restaurant owner that there might be trouble, does that mean that all 177 people they arrested were also aware of this?

If so, how did they come to be aware, if it was not in the media? And, if they did become aware, how did the police come to be aware of the fact that all these 177 people were aware of the fact that there might be trouble?

Pastorius said...

Where is the evidence for what you are saying? You say it was understood for weeks ...

So, who understood? The Police? Who else?

I have seen not even one claim that it was understood for weeks.

I have seen the Police claim they discouraged the restaurant owner from hosting the event because they were afraid there would be trouble.

But I have not seen it claimed that it was understood for weeks that there would be trouble.

So, again, let's say it was understood for weeks by the Police and even the restaurant owner that there might be trouble, does that mean that all 177 people they arrested were also aware of this?

If so, how did they come to be aware, if it was not in the media? And, if they did become aware, how did the police come to be aware of the fact that all these 177 people were aware of the fact that there might be trouble?

Anonymous said...

Re: June1, 01:27:00 anon comment:
TEXAS TYRANNY: WACO JUDGE AGREES TO LET MOST BIKERS GO – IF THEY SIGN A CONTRACT VOWING NOT TO SUE FOR WRONGFUL ARREST via Washington Weekly News

midnight rider said...

If any of this is true, then there is a very strong argument that, except for the Bandidos, there was little to no reason for the other bikers to expect there was going to be trouble. They were going to what was essentially a parlay (over a dispute over a rocker) not realizing it was a setup by the Bandidos.

Certainly, the members of smaller clubs that were there would not have been expecting violence. many may not have even been there for the parlay but simply for food and drink etc. and got caught up in it.

There is a perception that any member of an outlaw club must therefore be a bad individual. I mean he's an outlaw, right? When in truth the outlaw moniker merely means the club members subscribe to their own bylaws etc and not those of the AMA. Many members of these clubs hold regular jobs, have families, houses, mortgages etc. but prefer to spend their spare time riding hanging out and having a good rowdy time with like minded individuals. It does not make them criminals even if they were at this scene.

Now that doesn't mean there aren't bad actors within these clubs and one should always be wary. Members of groups like the Angels and the Pagans and the Bandidos and Cossacks and Scimitars etc can be extremely dangerous and brutally violent, especially when protecting their own. And yet these same groups often organize fundraisers and such for disaster victims, toy drives for kids (especially true of the Angels).

Now, all that said, and IF this is true, then MOST of the bikers their, whether there for the parlay or not, had NO reason to expect the melee that ensued. But, being bikers, many were armed and when they came under attack they defended themselves and their brothers as they would in any other situation.

That does not give the cops the right to hold them all without charge for this long.

And if the police think any of these guys are going to talk then they certainly do not understand the biker code of silence, which they take as seriously as their colors. Most would go to prison or die before dishonoring either one.

If the police have real suspects, persons they believe were there with real criminal intent, then they need to start proffering charges AND RELEASE THE REST.

And personally I am not buying the undercover cop story. Not at all. Nor did anything start in bathroom. Of all the stories I've read and discussed with Pasto the last few weeks this one seems most plausible.

rumcrook™ said...

in what american world, are people who have been jailed by the authorities and have bullets in them and serious medical needs left to rot without attention. this is tyrranical bullshit of the first order.

rumcrook™ said...

interesting that no police massacre of real criminals happened in any of the riots in cities across the nation even as whole nieghborhoods were destroyed, but some bikers get in a fistfight and from all legitimate accounts all those killed may have all been killed solely from police fire. the police were craven in dealing with the bikers and decided killing people was the best answer to the situation. strong arm tyranical after action by .gov elites the the order of the day to deal with thier failure on the scene. the old phrase from orwell "picture a boot stamping on a face forever" just started with these bikers becuase they are considered fringe and not special protected class thugs. couple this with the govewrnment considering ALL motorcycle owners potential terrorists and you see that "protecting america" was allways about more government power over actual americans and lip service to foriegn muslim terror threats. it has predictably started morphing into we will all be suspects. and protected classes will be... well, ...protected. even as they plot our demise.

rumcrook™ said...

it should be noted government snipers in fergusen had thier weapons pointed at patriots trying to protect businesses in fergusan, but not at rioters trying to burn civilization down...