A 10th name was added by mistake to indictments listing the nine people killed at the May 17 Twin Peaks shootout, officials reported Friday.
Dallas attorney Clint Broden, who represents several bikers charged in the case, said the “clerical error” that led indictments in several cases to attribute a 10th death to the melee is reflective of how McLennan County District Attorney Abel Reyna has handled the case from the start.
When indictments were recently read aloud, they included an additional individual — William Anderson — on top of the names of the widely reported nine bikers who were killed in the clash.
“The inclusion of the ‘10th dead biker’ in some of the Twin Peaks indictments was a clerical error on our part that can and will be corrected at a later date closer to trial,” Reyna said in a statement Friday, according to local TV stations. “The additional name has absolutely no effect on the charges or the viability of those indictments. I regret this minor error has shifted focus away from the violent and dangerous crimes that occurred in the heart of our community on May 17, 2015.”
Reyna’s statement came the day after a story in the Tribune-Herald noted the 10th name and quoted bikers speculating on who William Anderson might be. Reyna did not respond to requests for comment from the Tribune-Herald on Thursday or Friday and did not release his statement to the Tribune-Herald.
A handful of publications had reported the 10th name since the indictments were handed down last month, but none had an explanation for who it was or why it was added to the list.
Broden said Reyna wants to minimize this situation by calling it a “clerical error.”
“The fact that DA Reyna does not understand the magnitude of this error is shocking and disappointing,” Broden said in a statement. “A grand jury was designed to act as a check on the prosecution. Nevertheless, Mr. Reyna was able to bamboozle the grand jury into indicting Mr. (George) Bergman and Mr. (Richard) Luther and other motorcyclists for a murder that Reyna now acknowledges they had absolutely nothing to do with.”
A McLennan County grand jury on Nov. 10 indicted Bergman, of Balch Springs, and Luther, of Garland, along with 104 other bikers for their alleged involvement in the Twin Peaks shootout. Each was charged with engaging in organized criminal activity, with the underlying offenses alleged to be murder and assault.
Broden said this error gives new meaning to the old adage “that a prosecutor can get a grand jury to ‘indict a ham sandwich’ if he chooses.
“The fact that Mr. Reyna was able to obtain indictments for a crime which even he acknowledges did not occur is reflective of the way this case has been handled from the beginning,” he said.