Twenty-nine months after the deadly skirmish at Twin Peaks, an attorney for the first biker set for trial said Thursday that his trial will start next week “come hell or high water.”
After more than two years of examining trials, hearings, motions to recuse judges and to disqualify prosecutors, appeals court rulings and a host of speedy trial demands, it appears that Jacob Carrizal, the president of the Dallas chapter of the Bandidos, will stand trial next week.
Judge Matt Johnson of Waco’s 54th State District Court held a brief pretrial status conference Thursday and took up a few housekeeping matters involving discovery issues raised by Carrizal’s attorney, Casie Gotro, of Houston.
After the hearing, Gotro, who successfully fought to have 19th State District Judge Ralph Strother recused from hearing Carrizal’s case, said she will be ready for trial next week.
If there are no last-minute delay requests, Carrizal will be the first of 154 bikers indicted in the Twin Peaks melee to go to trial.
About 150 prospective jurors have been told to report Monday morning to fill out questionnaires with about 65 questions, which prosecutors and Gotro and her co-counsel, Thomas Lane, will use to aid them in selecting a jury. The judge has scheduled jury selection to start Tuesday.
The questionnaires will ask potential jurors about their knowledge of the Twin Peaks incident, if they know parties or potential witnesses in the case and what they think about the so-called “motorcycle lifestyle.” They also will be asked what they know about the Bandidos and Cossacks, the two warring motorcycle groups that collided that Sunday afternoon at Twin Peaks, leaving nine dead and dozens wounded.
Johnson resolved some discovery issues Thursday involving cellphone records, police reports and other items Gotro has said she is entitled to before trial but had not yet received from the district attorney’s office.
Carrizal, 36, of Dallas, an employee of the Dallas, Garland and Northeastern Railroad, is charged with one count of directing activities of a criminal street gang, one count of engaging in organized criminal activity with the underlying offense of murder and one count of engaging in organized criminal activity with the underlying offense of aggravated assault.