2013 – According to a nine-count federal indictment filed in San Antonio in December 2015, John Xavier Portillo, national vice president of the Bandidos Outlaw Motorcycle Organization, declared in 2013 that the group was “at war” with the Cossacks OMO.
Nov. 2, 2013 – According to a federal indictment, a group of approximately 10 Bandidos and their associates confront and assault a contingent of Cossacks members outside a Logan’s steakhouse in Abilene, Texas. Four Cossacks suffer stab wounds and other serious injuries. Among those injured is Timothy Satterwhite, who was arrested at the Twin Peaks shootout in Waco in May 2015.
Aug. 8, 2014 – A group of Bandidos Nomad Chapter members are dispatched to the Fort Worth area to conduct surveillance on Cossack OMO members for the purpose of identifying them, according to the federal indictment.
Aug. 11, 2014 – Twin Peaks Restaurant opens for business in Waco.
Dec. 11, 2014 – Bandidos members enter Red’s Take 5 Sports Bar, a known Cossacks hangout in Bridgeport, looking for members of the Cossacks. None were present. The Bandidos members left a sticker on the door of the bar with the OMO’s emblem on it as the left.
Dec. 12, 2014 – Bandidos members enter the Gators Jam Inn in Fort Worth, where members of the Cossacks, Ghost Riders and Winos OMOs were conducting a meeting. Bandidos members immediately begin to assault those in attendance. A member of the Ghost Riders is shot and killed.
March 3, 2015 – According to a federal indictment, Bandidos National Vice President John Portillo again declares the OMO is “at war” with the Cossacks. The indictment cites the Cossacks’ use of the “Texas” bottom rocker patch on the backs of their vest without Bandido permission.
March 22, 2015 – Approximately 20 Bandidos confront a Cossack at a gas station near Gordon, Texas, in Palo Pinto County. After the Cossack member refused to give them his vest with the “Texas” bottom rocker displayed on the back, he was assaulted, including being struck in the head with a claw hammer, causing serious injury.
March 22, 2015 – A Bandido is assaulted on I-35 by members of the Cossacks near Lorena.
April 11, 2015 – Three members of a New Mexico Bandidos chapter are stopped in Odessa, Texas, and found to be in possession of 10 firearms and ammunition. Federal officials state in the indictment against Portillo that the New Mexico Bandidos were acting on orders from Portillo to confront Cossacks in the Odessa area.
April 16, 2015 - Twin Peaks hosts a Bike Night, attended by 55 Cossacks and members of the Los Caballeros, a Bandidos support group. Nothing happened that night, but there was a large police presence there from at least five agencies.
May 1, 2015 - The Texas Department of Public Safety cautioned authorities about increasing violence between the Bandidos and the Cossacks. The DPS Joint Information Center bulletin said the tension could stem from Cossacks refusing to pay Bandidos dues for operating in Texas and for wearing a patch on their vest that claimed Texas as their turf without the Bandidos’ approval. “Traditionally, the Bandidos have been the dominant motorcycle club in Texas, and no other club is allowed to wear the Texas bar without their consent,” the bulletin said.
May 17, 2015
10 a.m. (approx.) – Waco Police Department positions 18 officers and SWAT team members, along with four Department of Public Safety troopers, across the street from the Twin Peaks parking lot inside Central Texas Marketplace. Waco PD spokesman Patrick Swanton said the officers were conspicuous, in an effort to quell potential violence between rival biker gangs.
11 a.m. – Twin Peaks opens for Sunday business.
11 a.m. – An employee at Hooters reported that a group of 11 Bandidos entered the restaurant and ate, but did not drink. “They came in wearing their colors. They were kind of rude this morning. They came in with an attitude,” she said.
11:30 a.m. – A contingent of around 50 Cossacks and their support groups, the Bogatyrs and Scimitars, arrive at Twin Peaks before the scheduled 1 p.m. meeting of the Texas Confederation of Clubs and Independents Region 1. They took over the patio area, which had been reserved for the COC&I meeting.
12:15 – As another group of Bandidos arrived in the Twin Peaks parking lot, several Cossacks, Bogatyrs and Scimitars climbed over the patio railing and went toward the Bandidos. “Several of the Cossacks pulled their weapons, including handguns, as they stood on the patio and exited the patio,” according to police department affidavits. Scimitars moved to the front entrance of the patio, appearing to take a “rear guard” position for the Cossacks, the documents allege. A Bandido nearly struck a Cossack with his motorcycle in the parking lot. Members of both groups converged and a Bandido punched a Cossack in the face. “Several Bandidos and Cossacks pulled out guns and knives, and shot and stabbed each other,” the records show.
An Associated Press review of security footage inside Twin Peaks restaurant cites the first shot being fired at 12:24 p.m.
1 p.m. – Scheduled start of Region 1 meeting of Texas Confederation of Clubs & Independents spring meeting at Twin Peaks.
1:30 p.m. – An assistant manager at Denny’s inside the Flying J Travel Center at I-35 and New Road reported a group of “about 30” bikers came into the restaurant. All were dressed in black clothing. The group ate and left in a hurry without paying the check. About five minutes later, police SWAT teams descended on the restaurant and appeared to be searching the grounds.
2:30 p.m. – Waco police describe the Twin Peaks scene as “secure, but active.”
“In 34 years of law enforcement, this is the most violent crime scene I have ever been involved in,” Swanton said. “There is blood everywhere.”
4 p.m. – Police confirm nine people were killed in the melee. Eight died at the scene, and one at a nearby hospital.
5 p.m. - In response to reports of many biker gang members coming into town from throughout the state, police move some witnesses to a secure location. At least 18 people are confirmed injured, most with gunshot or stab wounds. Officials shut down all of Central Texas Marketplace.
10:30 p.m. - Waco police detain 239 bikers at Twin Peaks. Of that number, 62 are released at the scene or from the Waco Convention Center, which served as a holding and processing center. The other 177 are held for questioning. McLennan Country District Attorney Abel Reyna arrives at the Waco Convention Center and instructs police officials to detain all members of the Bandidos and Cossacks OMOs, as well as members of their support groups that were at Twin Peaks. All are to be booked under the charge of engaging in organized criminal activity.
May 18, 2015
9 a.m. - In affidavits to support the arrests of the bikers issued by Justice of the Peace W.H. “Pete” Peterson on Monday morning, Waco police Officer Manuel Chavez officially identifies the groups as “members and associates of the Cossacks Motorcycle Club and the Bandidos Motorcycle Club.”
JP Peterson sets bail for the bikers arrested at Twin Peaks at $1 million each.
10:30 a.m. – The booking process for the 177 bikers detained at Twin Peaks is ongoing, but the final group of them leave the Waco Convention Center for transport to a McLennan County jail.
1 p.m. – Twin Peaks spokeswoman Meghan Hecke said the Waco location would be closed permanently. The company revoked its franchise from Peaktastic Beverage LLC, ownership group for Twin Peaks restaurants in Waco and Harker Heights headed by Jay Patel.
May 19, 2015
Preliminary autopsy reports identify those killed at Twin Peaks as: Daniel Raymond Boyett, 44, of Waco; Richard Vincent Kirschner, 47, of Wylie; Jacob Lee Rhyne, 39, of Ranger; Wayne Lee Campbell, 43, of Fort Worth; Charles Wayne Russell, 46, of Tyler; Jesus Delgado Rodriguez, 65, of New Braunfels; Richard Matthew Jordan II, 31, of Pasadena; Manuel Issac Rodriguez, 40, of Allen; and Matthew Mark Smith, 27, of Keller. All are identified as members of either the Cossacks or Bandidos OMOs by police.
Police say seven of the reported 18 injured during the Sunday shooting remain hospitalized.
May 20, 2015
- Jeff Battey, 50, a member of the Bandidos from Ponder, became the first of the 177 bikers arrested at Twin Peaks to post bail and be released from jail. Battey was arrested after being treated and released from a nearby hospital following the melee. Battey was fitted with an ankle monitor, per the conditions of his release, after officials met that morning to solidify the conditions. Battey became one of three of the 177 arrested May 17 to post the initial $1 million bond. The others were Dave Martinez of Terrell, president of the Dallas County chapter of the Bandidos, and Christopher Stainton, of Georgetown.
- Central Texas Marketplace reopens for business. Police removed barricades at 3:30 a.m. on the second part of the shopping center near Twin Peaks that had been closed since Sunday immediately following the shootout.
- Waco police Sgt. W. Patrick Swanton described the surreal scene inside Twin Peaks restaurant as the investigation continued. Weapons were hidden between sacks of flour and bags of tortilla chips, Swanton said. They were in vehicles, tucked in benches, strewn across the floor, in kitchen stoves, thrown into trashcans and stuffed in toilets, he said. An AK-47 was found in a vehicle in the parking lot, Swanton said. He said he thinks the majority of those weapons were “hastily” hidden or discarded during or after the melee. Among the weapons and blood spatters were half-eaten burgers, beer bottles covered in gang-symbol koozies and half-drunk margaritas.
- A statement released by the Twin Peaks franchisee also claimed the violence was primarily limited to the outside of the restaurant, though police have noted that a good amount of blood was found inside, particularly in the bathroom. The statement reads, in part: “Based on restaurant security camera video footage, what happened inside the restaurant was that people sought safety inside, where they assisted each other and came to the aid of patrons, staff and management. In addition, based on the same footage, no violence started inside the restaurant.”
- The Tribune-Herald filed a request under Texas’ Public Information Act for all video from the shooting, including security surveillance from Twin Peaks and Don Carlos, as well as any dash cam or body camera footage. Waco police objected to the release of the videos and sent the request to the Texas Attorney General’s office on June 2, seeking an opinion.
- The Associated Press released a story describing footage captured on the Twin Peaks security system. The AP was shown the video by representatives of the Twin Peaks franchise, who have said the fighting began outside the restaurant, not inside as police have said. Video footage shows police with assault rifles entering the door about two minutes after the shooting begins. As two officers enter, bikers can be seen lying on the floor with their hands spread. When gunshots start at 12:24 p.m. on the video, most bikers, other patrons and staff immediately run away from the windows and into the restaurant’s interior. One camera angle shows bikers running into the men’s bathroom. When there’s no space left in the bathroom, they dash toward the kitchen.
May 21, 2015
- Owners of Don Carlos Mexican restaurant file a lawsuit against Twin Peaks, seeking compensation for damages to the property as well as past and future lost profits after the shootout forced the restaurant to close for three days. Don Carlos sits next door to Twin Peaks, and the two restaurants share a parking lot. The lawsuit, filed in Dallas County, names as defendants Peaktastic Beverage LLC, the owner of the Waco and Harker Heights franchises, as well as Twin Peaks Investments LLC and Front Burner Restaurants GP LLC, the restaurant management group that oversees the Twin Peaks brand. It seeks in excess of $1 million in compensatory damages. The lawsuit also charges that Twin Peaks’ parent company actively encouraged franchisees to host events to drum up business, and that the franchiser was aware of past “Bike Night” promotions the Waco location hosted weekly. “Twin Peaks didn’t just add gas to the fire, it threw the match. Inviting armed rival gangs to a place where alcohol is served is not only unwise, it is reckless,” said Tony Buzbee, lead counsel for Don Carlos.
- Christopher Stainton, of Georgetown, becomes the second biker arrested at Twin Peaks to be released from jail. He posted $1 million bond.
May 22, 2015
State investigators issued a bulletin warning that members of the Bandidos motorcycle gang may be plotting attacks on law enforcement, and officers in Waco say it’s being treated as a serious threat. McLennan County Sheriff Parnell McNamara told the Associated Press his office received the bulletin issued by the Texas Department of Public Safety. McNamara says the bulletin warns of retaliation against officers and their families following the shootout with bikers in Waco. McNamara says threats against law enforcement have streamed in since Sunday’s melee at Twin Peaks. “Are they going to come into town at 100 miles per hour lobbing grenades and firebombs? Right now, we don’t know,” McNamara said.
- Judge Matt Johnson of Waco’s 54th State District Court said McLennan County has 29 attorneys who are approved to handle first-degree felony cases for those who cannot afford lawyers. He said so far 75 to 80 suspects in the Twin Peaks shooting have filled out financial affidavits to request indigent defense. Johnson noted that number may go up or down based on how many more apply and how many are approved for indigent defense. Johnson requested appointment lists for attorneys who handle first-degree felonies from surrounding communities, including Bell, Williamson, Travis, Dallas, Hill, Coryell, Limestone and Johnson counties.
May 26, 2015
Austin attorney Adam Reposa alleges in motions that the charging documents filed against his clients, Jimmy Pond and Thomas Paul Landers, and the 175 others jailed in the May 17 shootout at Twin Peaks, are legally insufficient. He also claims that the $1 million bonds are unreasonably oppressive and that the judge who set them and the judges who, so far, have not reduced them have shown bias and should be recused. Reposa seeks to recuse Justice of the Peace W.H. “Pete” Peterson because he set $1 million bonds on each defendant, saying he was doing so to “send a message” because of the “atrocity of the incident and the impact on the community.” Those motions will be forwarded to Regional Administrative Judge Billy Ray Stubblefield, of Georgetown, who can reject the motions or appoint a judge to hear the recusal motions.
- Police clear out of the Twin Peaks property. “That scene has been released,” Waco police Sgt. W. Patrick Swanton said.
May 27, 2015
175 of the 177 bikers arrested at Twin Peaks remain jailed on charges of engaging in organized criminal activity, 10 days after the melee that killed 9 people and injured 18 others. According to county records, the county has spent upward of $80,000 just to house the inmates at a rate of $7,958 a day.
May 28, 2015
State District Judges Matt Johnson and Ralph Strother approved bond reductions from $1 million to $25,000 each for Jonathan Lopez, Theron Rhoten and Ryan Craft, members of the Vice Grips Motorcycle Club who ride antique Harley-Davidson motorcycles. The three rode from Austin to attend the meeting of the Texas Confederation of Clubs and Independents and had only just arrived when the shooting started. They became the first of the 177 arrested at Twin Peaks to be released from jail on a reduced bond.
McLennan County officials say they have appointed 47 lawyers to represent indigent bikers, and are spending $8,000 a day to detain the 177 bikers arrested at Twin Peaks.
- Prosecutors and defense attorneys begin negotiations to reduce bond amounts on the 175 bikers who remain jailed on $1 million bonds. Two of those arrested, Jeff Battey and Christopher Stainton, paid the $1 million bond amount – Battey on May 20, Stainton on May 21.
May 29, 2015
Matthew Alan Clendennen, 30, of Hewitt, a member of the Scimitars Motorcycle Club, files a federal civil rights lawsuit against in Waco’s U.S. District Court. The suit names as defendants the city of Waco, McLennan County and Waco police Officer Manuel Chavez, who drafted what Clendennen’s attorney calls the “fill-in-the-blank warrants” for the bikers’ arrests. Clendennen, who remains jailed under $1 million bond, claims he was not engaged in criminal activity at Twin Peaks and was arrested and detained without cause. The suit also claims his motorcycle was seized illegally. His attorney is Clinton Broden, of Dallas.
- Juan Carlos Garcia, Drew King and James Harris, all of Austin, are released from McLennan County Jail after posting bond of $25,000 each. All three were arrested at Twin Peaks May 17, but mistakenly charged with a lesser engaging in organized criminal activity charge, which resulted in a lower initial bond. District Judge Ralph Strother declared their first bond amount – set between $20,000 and $50,000 – insufficient and ordered the three to be arrested on May 19. Garcia, King and Harris became the 7th, 8th and 9th of the 177 bikers arrested at Twin Peaks to post bond, and the second group of three to post lowered bond amounts.
June 1 – Dave Martinez, president of the Dallas County chapter of the Bandidos, is released from a McLennan County jail after posting a $1 million bond. He was the ninth biker released on bond since the May 17 shootout at Twin Peaks.
June 2 – Jail officials report 25 of the 177 bikers arrested at Twin Peaks on May 17 have been released on bond. Among those released on the lowered bond amount of $25,000 are Sandra Lynch of Mart, and her husband, Mike, a plumber. Lynch reserved the patio at Twin Peaks for the May 17 Texas COC&I Region 1 meeting and is a well-known local bike enthusiast. Also released was Matthew Clendennen of Hewitt.
- A Dallas attorney who represents a biker in a civil rights lawsuit against the city of Waco and McLennan County filed a complaint against McLennan County Justice of the Peace W.H. “Pete” Peterson. The complaint, filed with the State Commission on Judicial Conduct by attorney Clint Broden, alleges Peterson violated several judicial ethical canons in the manner in which he set bonds for jailed after the May 17 shootout at Twin Peaks restaurant. Broden said his complaint is based on comments Peterson made to the Tribune-Herald, including, “I think it is important to send a message. We had nine people killed in our community. These people just came in, and most of them were from out of town. Very few of them were from in town.” The complaint also alleges that Peterson set $1 million bonds for the bikers “without any individual consideration for the facts of the individual cases.”
June 4 – Visiting Judge Doug Shaver, of Houston, denied an attempt by an attorney for nine bikers arrested in the deadly Twin Peaks shootout to remove McLennan County’s two felony court judges from presiding over the cases. Adam Reposa, who represents nine bikers associated with the Bandidos, failed in his efforts to prove 54th State District Judge Matt Johnson and 19th State District Judge Ralph Strother are biased and should not hear the bikers’ cases. Reposa tried to base his claims of judicial bias on an incident that occurred when Strother and Johnson intervened two weeks ago after three bikers from Austin, who were booked into the jail on lesser charges, were released on bonds lower than the $1 million set for the others.
June 7 – More than 500 motorcycle riders converged on downtown Waco to protest the continued incarceration of 177 bikers arrested at Twin Peaks on May 17. Dubbed as the “Waco Freedom Ride,” some wore shirts that read “Waco biker massacre” and “Read this: I’m not in a gang.”
June 9 – Judge Billy Ray Stubblefield, who presides over the 26-county region, meets with Ralph Strother and Matt Johnson, McLennan County’s primary felony court judges, to “basically brainstorm” ways to expedite bond-reduction hearings and other matters involving the bikers’ cases. As of June 7, 73 out of 177 arrested bikers had been released from jail, most on reduced bonds negotiated between their attorneys and the district attorney’s office and approved by Johnson and Strother.
June 10 – During a bond reduction hearing before 54th State District Judge Matt Johnson, Reginald Weathers, 43, of Forney, a member of the Bandidos, testified in court about his role in what started the May 17 melee at Twin Peaks. Weathers testified that he and about 15 other Bandidos from the Dallas area had just pulled into the restaurant parking lot and saw Cossacks lining the patio area. He said he hadn’t even parked his motorcycle before Cossacks yelled at club President David Martinez that he couldn’t park in a particular spot. Weathers said he felt like the Cossacks were “disrespecting” Martinez, and he rushed over and told them not to talk to his president that way. Suddenly, a Cossack punched him in the face, he said. He said he put his head down to cover up and defend himself and heard gunshots seconds later. He was being pulled to the ground and was being hit in the face, he said. Later, he was shot in the arm. The bullet passed through his arm, entered his chest and exited the other side, he said.
June 12 – In his first public comments, Waco Police Chief Brent Stroman told reporters that three Waco officers fired a total of 12 shots during the May 17 Twin Peaks shootout that killed nine people and injured 18, landing 177 suspects in jail.
Stroman said 12 shell casings were fired from police rifles and found at the scene. No other law enforcement officers from other agencies fired their weapons, he said. To date, a total of 44 casings had been recovered, but Stroman said that total doesn’t include any casings that remained inside revolvers that were fired. All other shells found at the scene weren’t from law enforcement weapons, he said. A Waco Police Department press release reports that the three officers fired .223-caliber rifles that are capable of fully automatic fire, but were only used in semi-automatic mode during the Twin Peaks shootout.
All Waco police officers were inside their vehicles at the time the shooting started at Twin Peaks, the release says. The officers involved have been assigned administrative duties pending the outcome of the investigation.
Police confirm 239 people were transported to the Waco Convention Center from Twin Peaks after the shooting, with 62 being released and 177 arrested. Police also updated the list of confiscated weapons to include 475 total, including 151 firearms, 12 of which were long guns. Other weapons include knives, brass knuckles, batons, tomahawks, weighted weapons, a hatchet, stun guns, bats, clubs, a machete, a pipe, an ax, pepper spray and a chain.
June 16 - Prosecutors file notices of their intent to seize and forfeit 17 motorcycles, eight pickup trucks and two SUVs, alleging the vehicles are contraband used during the commission of the noon-hour incident that left nine bikers dead, 20 wounded and 177 jailed on engaging in organized criminal activity charges.
June 28 – According to McLennan County Court records, local bail bond companies wrote $12.88 million in bonds during the month of June. Of the 177 bikers arrested May 17, 166 had posted bond by the end of June, including 163 who posted lower, negotiated bonds from the $1 million bond set by Justice of the Peace “Pete” Peterson on May 18.
June 30 - Judge Matt Johnson of Waco’s 54th State District Court granted a prosecution request to place a gag order in the Matthew Alan Clendennen federal civil rights lawsuit against the city of Waco, McLennan County and Waco PD officer Manuel Chavez, preventing attorneys on both sides, law enforcement officers and witnesses from discussing that case only in the media. Though the gag order only applies to Clendennen’s case, law enforcement from that point forward declines to discuss any of the cases, citing the gag order.
July 1 – Dallas attorney Clint Broden files an emergency appeal seeking to lift the gag order imposed by Judge Matt Johnson in the federal civil rights lawsuit filed by Matthew Clendennen of Hewitt. Broden said in his appeal, “Whether real or perceived, there is a noxious odor surrounding the investigation by the Waco police and the McLennan County District Attorney’s office with regard to the Twin Peaks shooting and the wholesale arrest of 177 motorcyclists based on identical, fill-in-the-name criminal complaints.”
July 8 – Waco police Detective James Head, a 34-year police veteran who spent 26 years with Waco PD, was selected to preside over a new McLennan County grand jury that could be the panel that considers the Twin Peaks shootings. The grand jury was selected using the new state-mandated random method. James Head was among the first 14 on the panel qualified to serve on the grand jury and, beyond that, 19th State District Judge Ralph Strother selected Head to serve as the foreman.
July 10 – Only four of the 177 bikers arrest May 17 at Twin Peaks remain jailed in McLennan County: Michael E. Chaney, a Cossack from Fort Worth; Joseph Ortiz, a Bandido from San Antonio; Marcus Pilkington, a Bandido from Mexia; and Daniel Pesina, a member of a Bandidos support group called Macheteros from San Antonio. Of the four, only Ortiz did not have charges pending in other Texas counties.
- Parking lot video from Don Carlos Mexican Restaurant across from Twin Peaks is released to local, state and national media. The 90-minute video shows bikers scrambling to take cover at the time of the shooting next door.
July 17 – Joseph Ortiz, a member of the Bandidos from San Antonio, reached an agreement with the district attorney’s office to reduce his bond from $100,000 to $20,000. His release leaves the number of bikers arrested May 17 at Twin Peaks still in jail at three.
July 23 - Joe Carroll, senior judge of the 27th Judicial District Court, granted a motion to recuse Justice of the Peace W.H. “Pete” Peterson from the case involving Matthew Clendennen after Clendennen’s attorney, Clint Broden, filed a complaint against Peterson. Peterson set the initial $1 million bonds for the 177 bikers arrested in the aftermath of the May 17 shootout, and he was on the scene that day to pronounce death and order autopsies on all nine bodies of those who were killed. Carroll said Clendennen’s case should now fall to the next-closest justice of the peace, Dianne Hensley. Broden noted during the hearing that Hensley has said she will recuse herself because she doesn’t think she can be impartial.
July 27 – Waco police Sgt. W. Patrick Swanton, whose press conference briefings on May 17 became a flashpoint of protest by the biker community, announces his intention to run for McLennan County sheriff in 2016.
Aug. 3 - Judge Billy Ray Stubblefield, administrative judge of the 26-county 3rd Judicial Region, confirmed that he appointed Judge James Morgan to preside over the examining trial of Hewitt resident Matthew Clendennen, which is set for Aug. 10. Stubblefield said his order also gives Morgan authority to hear any of the 19 other cases involving bikers seeking examining trials to challenge whether there was sufficient probable cause for their arrests after the shootout.
Aug. 7 - In an opinion written by 10th Court of Appeals Chief Justice Tom Gray, the court granted a petition for writ of mandamus filed by Matthew Clendennen and gave 54th State District Judge Matt Johnson seven days to vacate the gag order he imposed in Clendennen’s case on June 30.
Aug. 11 – After three months of complaints, accusations, recusals and resets, a visiting judge approves a revised examining trial schedule for 17 bikers arrested in the May 17 Twin Peaks shootout. With only two of 177 bikers who were arrested on engaging in organized criminal activity charges remaining in the McLennan County Jail, and the McLennan County District Attorney’s Office releasing some of its evidence to defense attorneys, the scheduled examining trials don’t have the sense of urgency they once did.
Retired State District Judge James Morgan scheduled three hearings for Aug. 17, four for Aug. 19, three for Aug. 24, two for Aug. 26, three for Aug. 27 and two for Aug. 28. Examining trials are rare in McLennan County and are set normally for those who remain in jail, have not been indicted and who challenge the sufficiency of evidence backing their arrests. Primarily, the hearings are used by defense attorneys to get a look at the evidence against their clients.
Aug. 13 - Autopsy reports on the nine bikers killed in the May 17 Twin Peaks shootout were released by McLennan County Justice of the Peace W.H. “Pete” Peterson’s office.
The melee also injured 20 people, a number revised from the original police estimate of 18, and resulted in the arrest of another 177, two of whom remain in the McLennan County Jail after most of the other 175 — all charged with engaging in organized criminal activity — received individual reductions from controversial initial $1 million bonds. The nine died as a result of one or more bullet wounds, but ballistics reports are not included with the autopsy reports.
Waco Police Chief Brent Stroman said in June that three Waco officers fired a total of 12 rounds that day.
Police have said the ballistics investigation is being headed by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, which has possession of more than 475 weapons from the scene, including at least 151 firearms. The newly released reports do not indicate who killed which men, and most references to bullets refer to projectiles ranging in size from small to large. Gunshot residue kits were submitted for each of the nine killed.
Aug. 13 - The Texas Court of Criminal Appeals puts a hold on proceedings involving a gag order issued by a McLennan County state district judge in the case of a biker arrested in the Twin Peaks shootout. The ruling by the state’s highest criminal court stays an order released last week by Waco’s 10th Court of Appeals, effectively keeping the gag order issued June 30 by District Judge Matt Johnson in place. The order had been reversed by the 10th Court of Appeals Aug. 7.
Aug. 24 - Two patrons who were eating lunch at the Twin Peaks restaurant when the deadly May 17 shootout broke out filed a lawsuit against Twin Peaks, its subsidiaries and a former franchise holder. The plaintiffs are identified only as M.K.H. and C.R.H. in the lawsuit, which says only that they are Texas residents. The suit, filed in Waco’s 170th State District Court, names Peaktastic Beverage, Front Burner Restaurants, Twin Restaurant Investment Co. and Chalik Mitra Group as defendants.
Sept. 9 - A McLennan County investigator obtained a search warrant to extract a bullet from the arm of a biker — killed the prior week in a wreck — who was wounded in the deadly May 17 Twin Peaks shootout but left Waco before he was identified or arrested. The warrant, issued by 19th State District Judge Ralph Strother, is for a bullet in the arm of James Kenneth “Spaz” Anderson, 53, of Henderson, a member of the Bandidos. He was killed Sept. 3 when his motorcycle struck one or more deer on a highway in northwestern Nebraska.
Sept. 28 – The Twin Peaks restaurant in Harker Heights closed. Rick Van Warren, a spokesman for the Twin Peaks corporate office in Addison, confirmed Monday that the former franchise owner, Peaktastic, the same business consortium that owned the Waco Twin Peaks franchise, closed the Harker Heights location. Jay Patel, principal partner in Peaktastic, was stripped of his Twin Peaks franchises in Waco and Harker Heights in the wake of the Waco shootout in which nine bikers were killed and 20 others wounded.
Sept. 29 - McLennan County commissioners approved paying almost $17,000 toward a liability insurance deductible because of a Twin Peaks-related lawsuit that named the county as a defendant and has since been dismissed. The court agreed to pay $16,971.87 to its insurance company, the Texas Association of Counties Risk Management Pool, in a case filed by Hewitt biker Matthew Clendennen, who was among the 177 arrested after the May 17 Twin Peaks shootout.
Oct. 14 - McLennan County prosecutors subpoenaed the president of the Bandidos motorcycle gang’s Austin chapter to appear before a new grand jury that was seated, but settled for his records from a motorcycle confederation instead. Jimmy Graves, a Bandido who also heads the Texas Confederation of Clubs and Independents, a coalition of motorcycle groups, was subpoenaed to appear before the grand jury and to bring COC&I documents, according to Bill Smith, an attorney for the confederation.
- Judge Matt Johnson of Waco’s 54th State District Court empaneled a new grand jury. Those 12 people, plus four alternates, replace the previous grand jury that was headed by a Waco police detective. Like the previous grand jury, the new panel was selected at random from rolls of registered voters and licensed drivers, as dictated by new legislation. There are no other plans for that grand jury — and previous foreman, Detective James Head — to meet again, the judge said. Head being named foreman of the grand jury provided ample fodder for conspiracy buffs and biker groups, who took to social media to decry the move. The term of the new grand jury was set to expire Dec. 31. The panel could be called upon to hear evidence involving the deadly May 17 shooting at Twin Peaks in which nine bikers died and 20 others were wounded.
Oct. 24 - The Texas Attorney General’s Office notified McLennan County District Attorney Abel Reyna this month that his office violated the Texas Public Information Act when it failed to provide text messages related to the DA’s response to the May 17 Twin Peaks shootout. A former sheriff’s deputy says Reyna’s office has violated the act at least three times on requests he has filed. In a letter dated Oct. 13, Assistant Attorney General Lance Kutnick informs Reyna that his office violated the act and that he has four days to “cure” the violation. Randall Scott Gates, a retired law enforcement officer and self-styled “minister of irritance (sic),” said the DA’s office finally gave him a portion of the information he was seeking, but not until after two attorney general’s opinions, a complaint and a ruling that the office violated the Texas Public Information Act.
Oct. 30 – CNN releases video from Twin Peaks surveillance cameras and crime scene photos of the May 17 shootout.
The footage is consistent with early police descriptions of weapons hidden between sacks of flour and bags of tortilla chips. They were allegedly in vehicles, tucked in benches, strewn across the floor, in kitchen stoves, thrown into trash cans and stuffed in toilets. CNN’s video footage shows men clad in Cossacks and Bandidos colors hiding under tables, running, covered in blood, holding and firing guns during the melee.
“It does appear to be crime scene photos and video from Twin Peaks, but we did not release it,” Waco police Sgt. W. Patrick Swanton said. Swanton noted, “I can speculate that it was released by an attorney who got it through discovery.”
The Tribune-Herald in the days following the shootout requested surveillance video and photos from the scene, but the city refused to provide more than 19 pages of incomplete incident reports from the day of the shooting. The Texas Attorney General’s Office ruled for the city on Aug. 7, saying it could withhold the photos, video surveillance and 911 audio recordings, among other evidence, from the Tribune-Herald.
“There is a small pool of individuals that include defense attorneys who had access to the information through discovery,” Swanton said in a statement. “The party responsible for providing the released video and photographs may be subject to ethical and legal issues for doing so.”
Nov. 2 – Marcus Pilkington, 38, of Mexia, is released from McLennan County Jail on a $50,000 bond, the last biker arrested after the May 17 shootout to be released. Pilkington was released in August from McLennan County to answer charges pending in other counties, then returned to McLennan County.
Nov. 10 – A 12-person grand jury panel, summoned in a specially called meeting, begins to hear evidence from the May 17 shootout at Twin Peaks. It is headed by an Iraqi combat veteran and was empaneled Oct. 14.
The grand jury, working a marathon nine-hour session, returned 106 indictments charging bikers allegedly involved in the melee with engaging in organized criminal activity.
McLennan County District Attorney Abel Reyna said the grand jury will return to consider charges against the other 80 bikers arrested on identical charges following the incident in which nine bikers were killed and 20 were wounded. Reyna said 106 cases were presented to the grand jury Tuesday and 106 indictments were returned. Of those 106 indictments, nine were sealed because the defendants had not been arrested yet, McLennan County District Clerk Jon Gimble said.
Those indicted were charged with engaging in organized criminal activity, with the underlying offenses alleged to be murder and assault. The charge is a first-degree felony, punishable by up to life in prison or from 15 to 99 years in prison.
Nov. 11 - In response to District Attorney Abel Reyna’s speaking to the media Nov. 10 about the results of the grand jury’s work, Clint Broden, who represents indicted Hewitt biker Matthew Clendennen, files another brief with the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals asking it to vacate its stay on a 10th Court of Appeals order lifting the gag order.
Broden argues in the supplemental brief that Reyna cannot in good faith appeal the 10th Court’s decision while he “continues to violate the very gag order he is asking this court to uphold.” Broden previously alleged in court briefs that Reyna has “unclean hands,” meaning he cannot appeal the order lifting the gag order while violating it. “Perhaps emboldened by the court ‘declining to act’ in the past, (Reyna) has now moved on to giving press conferences about the case,” Broden wrote in his brief.
Nov. 17 - Six of nine bikers named in sealed indictments for their alleged roles in the Twin Peaks shootout surrendered to authorities. The nine were among 106 bikers indicted Nov. 10 on first-degree felony engaging in organized criminal activity charges. The nine were indicted under seal because they had not been arrested before the grand jury session.
Christopher Carrizal Sr., 50, of Dallas; Jerry Edward Pierson, 49, of Dallas; and Paul Russell Miller, 39, of Gholson, turned themselves in and were booked into the McLennan County Jail. Ray Asbary Nelson, 42, of Waco; Jeffrey Veillon, 53, of Wylie; and Clifford Pearce, 52, of Waco, surrendered to authorities.
Nov. 18 - Six bikers implicated in the deadly May 17 Twin Peaks shootout have filed civil rights lawsuits against Waco and McLennan County officials. Dallas attorneys Clint Broden and Don Tittle filed the suits on behalf of bikers Matthew Clendennen, Robert Bucy, George Bergman, Noe Adame, John Vensel and Jorge Salinas.
The lawsuits, filed in an Austin federal court, allege the bikers’ civil rights were violated because they claim they were falsely arrested after the shootout. They claim their rights to due process under the law were violated. The lawsuit names as defendants McLennan County District Attorney Abel Reyna, Waco Police Chief Brent Stroman, Waco police Detective Manuel Chavez and a Texas Department of Public Safety trooper referred to in the lawsuit as “John Doe.”
Nov. 25 - McLennan County District Clerk Jon Gimble unsealed the indictment charging Cory McAlister, 36, of Ore City. McAlester is one of nine among 106 bikers indicted Nov. 10 on first-degree felony engaging in organized criminal activity charges. The nine were indicted under seal because they had not been arrested before the grand jury session.
Dec. 1 - The eighth of nine sealed indictments returned Nov. 10 in the Twin Peaks shootout was unsealed. James Madison Caffey, 39, of Gilmer, who was among 106 bikers indicted on first-degree felony engaging in organized criminal activity charges, remains in the McLennan County Jail under $250,000 bond. Caffey was arrested in Tyler and taken to the Smith County Jail. His indictment remained sealed until he was brought to McLennan County, officials said.
Dec. 3 - State and federal authorities made an arrest at a Louisiana casino of the ninth biker who was named in a sealed indictment related to the May 17 Twin Peaks shootout. A McLennan County grand jury indicted 106 bikers last month on first degree felony charges of engaging in organized criminal activity in relation to the shootout. Nine of the indictments were sealed, because the bikers named had not been arrested.
McLennan County Sheriff Parnell McNamara and Bossier City, Louisiana, officials identified the fugitive biker as Phillip White, 38, of Eddy. His indictment was unsealed. Authorities said White is a member of the Cossacks motorcycle group. He was arrested at about 9:30 p.m. at a casino in Bossier City.
Dec. 8 - Four bikers indicted in the May 17 Twin Peaks shootout pleaded not guilty during brief arraignment hearings. Judge Ralph Strother of Waco’s 19th State District Court accepted not guilty pleas from John Moya, 27, of Gatesville; Robert Robertson, 36, of Fort Worth; Trey Short, 28, of Temple; and Seth A. Smith, 28, of Waco. Three of the four requested that prosecutors read aloud in court the lengthy indictments against them alleging they engaged in organized criminal activity as a member of a criminal street gang. The indictments allege underlying offenses of murder and assault and carry a punishment range of from 15 years to life in prison.
Dec. 11 – The Associated Press reported that findings from the ballistics report show four of the nine people killed in a melee between rival biker gangs outside a Twin Peaks restaurant were struck by the same caliber of rifle fired by Waco police. Hours of audio and footage and hundreds of documents including ballistics reports show that four of the dead and at least one of the wounded were struck with bullets from .223-caliber rifles — the only type of weapon fired by police that day.
Two of the four dead had wounds from only that kind of rifle; the other two were shot by other kinds of guns as well. The ballistics reports show that the rest of the people killed were shot by a variety of other guns. It was not clear whether any bikers had similar guns to the police that day. Among the hundreds of weapons authorities recovered from the scene were 12 long guns, which could include rifles.
The Southwestern Institute of Forensic Sciences, which conducted the ballistics analysis, declined to comment on its findings. Waco Police Chief Brent Stroman had said in June that officers shot a total of 12 rounds using the semi-automatic setting on their .223-caliber rifles.
Dec. 12 - CNN released a short clip of surveillance video from the May 17 Twin Peaks shootout that left nine people dead 20 people injured. The new video released shows violent exchanges between bikers outside the restaurant’s patio. The clips released in October showed the scene on the patio and inside the restaurant. In both cases, CNN did not disclose its source for the video. The most recent release closely follows an Associated Press report that four of the bikers killed were hit with the caliber of bullets Waco police fired that day.
Dec. 17 - While authorities have said for months that nine bikers died in the May 17 Twin Peaks shootout, indictments in the cases attribute a 10th death to the melee. The names of the nine bikers killed in the clash of the rival groups have been widely reported. But it wasn’t until recently, when the indicted bikers appeared in court for arraignments and the indictments were read aloud, that the inclusion of a 10th biker, identified in indictments as William Anderson, was noticed. DA officials later described the inclusion of the 10th name as a clerical error.
Dec. 29 - An attorney for a biker charged in the May 17 Twin Peaks shootout challenges the McLennan County district attorney’s requirement that he sign a release form to receive the prosecutors’ evidence in the case. A hearing date has been set Jan. 15 before Judge Matt Johnson of Waco’s 54th State District Court for a motion filed by Robert Callahan, whose client, William Aikin, was among the 106 indicted in the case so far.
Callahan’s motion states he has not been able to receive the information, after numerous requests, because he won’t sign a condition of release regarding talking to the media. He is asking for the prosecutors’ evidence collected during discovery to be released without the requirement that he sign the release agreement.
Dec. 30 – The May 17 Twin Peaks shootout is named the top local story of 2015 by the Tribune-Herald.
Jan. 6 - Attorney Robert Callahan withdrew his request from the court to compel the prosecutors to release evidence in his client’s case, as required by the Michael Morton Act. Callahan filed the motion after saying he had attempted on multiple occasions to get the information against his client, William Aikin, a biker charged in the May 17 Twin Peaks shootout. The DA’s office was asking defense attorneys in the case to sign a release form related to public disclosures before getting evidence against their clients. After Callahan filed the request, the DA’s office told him it would provide the requested information without condition, according to the withdrawal form Callahan later submitted.
Jan. 9 - Bunny McLeod, a Dallas- and Houston-based real estate agent who has been involved in attracting tenants to Central Texas Marketplace for several years, has the listing for the shopping center’s infamous Twin Peaks building. The 7,869-square-foot structure had been for sale since September with an asking price of $4.2 million. It was also available for lease at $350,000 per year.
Jan. 19 - Waco City Council signed off on the application for a federal grant to offset the cost of responding to the Twin Peaks biker shootout last May 17. The city is seeking a $248,841 Justice Assistance Grant from the U.S. Department of Justice. The bulk of the requested funding, more than $240,000, would go to the Waco Police Department for overtime and equipment.
Jan. 26 - McLennan County District Attorney Abel Reyna asks to postpone a Feb. 29 trial setting in the first Twin Peaks shootout case, saying that analysis of some evidence likely won’t be completed for a year. In a 19-page motion for continuance, Reyna asks 54th State District Judge Matt Johnson to postpone the engaging in organized criminal activity trial of Matthew Alan Clendennen, 30, a member of the Scimitars motorcycle group from Hewitt.
Several attorneys for the 106 bikers indicted Nov. 10 on identical charges, including Clendennen’s attorney, Clint Broden, have pushed for speedy trials for their clients. But prosecutors have opposed such demands, saying they are not prepared for trial because evidence is still being processed by state and federal agencies.
Reyna’s motion cites prosecutors’ obligations under the Michael Morton Act, which requires full disclosure of state’s evidence — good and bad — to the defense. Houston attorney Paul Looney, who pushed for a speedy trial for his client, Cody Ledbetter, a member of the Cossacks from Waco, said at a hearing earlier this month that the trial delay is causing Ledbetter “serious and long-standing harm.”
March 1 – McLennan County Sheriff Parnell McNamara defeats Waco police Sgt. W. Patrick Swanton and one other candidate in the Republican primary race for sheriff. McNamara got 19,976 votes compared to Swanton’s 9,445 votes.
March 10 – The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms announced it had completed tracing the histories of 151 firearms recovered from the Twin Peaks restaurant grounds and seized from bikers’ vehicles May 17.
March 11 - An intermediate appellate court in Waco denied a petition from a biker indicted in the Twin Peaks shootout to order a state district judge to set a speedy trial in his case. The 10th Court of Appeals opinion, written by Justice Rex D. Davis, rejected a petition for writ of mandamus filed by Cody Ledbetter, a member of the Cossacks motorcycle group. The petition asked the higher court to order 19th State District Judge Ralph Strother to set a quick trial date for Ledbetter, which Strother previously had denied. Chief Justice Tom Gray and Justice Al Scoggins joined Davis in the opinion, which includes a note that says Gray would request a response from the state.
“I’m going to appeal it to the Court of Criminal Appeals. They are wrong,” said Houston attorney Paul Looney, who represents Ledbetter. “They don’t have a right to not give me my trial.”
March 23 - A McLennan County grand jury returned 48 new indictments in the May 17 Twin Peaks shootout between rival biker groups.
Courthouse records show that 48 indictments were returned on first-degree charges of engaging in organized criminal activity, and six of the 48 were sealed, meaning the people indicted have not yet been arrested. Including the 48 indictments, 154 people had been indicted in connection to the deadly shootout.
March 29 - The first of six bikers who were named in sealed indictments remained in the McLennan County Jail after he was taken into custody the prior day. James Byron Hardin, 38, who county records show is president of the Brazos Valley chapter of the Amigos motorcycle group, a support group of the Bandidos, was arrested on a first-degree felony engaging in organized criminal activity charge.
Hardin, of Somerville, was jailed in lieu of $250,000 bond.
March 30 - Two more of the six bikers who were named in sealed indictments last week were arrested on charges of engaging in criminal activity, unsealing the indictments.
Richard Dewayne Smith, 39, and Richard Clarence Lockhart, 46, were each arrested on a first-degree felony charge of engaging in organized criminal activity for their alleged roles in the May 17 biker shootout at Twin Peaks. Each man was subsequently released from custody by Wednesday afternoon after posting a $250,000 surety bond. Officials report that Smith is a member of the Bandidos and Lockhart is a member of the Compañeros, a support group of the Bandidos.
March 31 - Another of the six bikers who were charged in sealed indictments last week for their alleged involvement in the Twin Peaks shootout was taken into custody on charges of engaging in criminal activity. Keith McCallum, 47, of Mesquite, was booked into the McLennan County Jail, allowing county officials to unseal his indictment. McCallum is a member of the Desgraciados Motorcycle Club, a support group of the Bandidos, an official said. He was released after posting $50,000 bond, according to jail officials. McCallum is the fourth biker arrested this week of the six named in sealed indictments. The documents were sealed because they previously had not been arrested.
April 1 - The fifth of six bikers charged in sealed indictments last week for their alleged involvement in the Twin Peaks biker shootout was arrested.
William Joseph Flowers, 41, was booked into the McLennan County Jail on a first-degree felony engaging in organized crime charge. A McLennan County grand jury indicted 48 more bikers last week in the shootout that left nine people dead and two dozen others injured, bringing the total to 154 indictments on identical charges. Six of the indictments returned last week were sealed, because the bikers had not yet been arrested in the case.
April 6 - Videos posted online show new angles of the Twin Peaks shootout in Waco on May 17, 2015. The footage, some of which is graphic, shows fighting and guns at the violent melee at the Waco restaurant. Las Vegas attorney Stephen Stubbs posted four videos of raw footage to his YouTube channel, including one 21-minute video said to be from a Waco police car’s dashboard camera. Another video says it is from a Texas Department of Public Safety camera.
April 7 - A former McLennan County Sheriff’s Office jail lieutenant was arrested for allegedly providing law enforcement information two months before the Twin Peaks shootout to a gang member arrested in the bloody melee. Jennifer Guftason Howell, 40, was charged with misuse of official information, a third-degree felony, after a Texas Department of Public Safety investigator found text messages between Howell and the gang member while conducting a detailed investigation of cellphone data collected in the Twin Peaks investigation, according to an arrest affidavit. The unidentified gang member asked Howell to provide the name and address associated with the license plate of a vehicle that had run another gang member off the road, according to the affidavit.
April 11 - The last of six bikers charged in sealed indictments last month for their alleged involvement in the Twin Peaks shootout was booked into the McLennan County Jail. Stephen Matt Dudley, 39, of White Oak, was released from jail later Monday after posting $40,000 bond. The indictment charging him with engaging in organized criminal activity was unsealed Monday morning. Dudley is affiliated with the Cossacks biker group and was shot during the Twin Peaks incident, officials said. He was hospitalized and, as a result, was not arrested until Monday. In all, 154 indictments have been returned on identical first-degree felony charges. The six indictments were sealed because the defendants previously had not been arrested.
April 22 - A judge rejected a request from a biker who was wounded during the Twin Peaks shootout to lift a bond condition that prohibits him from associating with other bikers from groups present at the May 17 incident. Seth Sutton, attorney for Jeff Battey, a member of the Bandidos from Ponder, charged that the restriction violates Battey’s right to free association and that it is an “absurd notion” to think that the restriction somehow is keeping the community safe. Battey was the first biker arrested at Twin Peaks to post bond. He paid a $1 million bond and was released May 20, 2015, three days after the shootout.
May 14 - About 100 motorcycle riders from the Waco, Dallas and Houston areas converged in front of the McLennan County Courthouse to commemorate the first anniversary of the Twin Peaks shootout.
Attorney Paul Looney, of Hempstead, featured speaker at the rally, celebrated the fact that almost all the indicted bikers are out on bond, and “to my knowledge, not one has violated the terms of his bond and not one has pleaded out (guilty). All these cases need to go to trial. There’s not enough evidence to convict anyone. The only person who might be in deep trouble would be a biker wearing colors, if he were the one who fired the first shot.”
Looney also said he expects another defense attorney to file a motion Tuesday, May 17, to disqualify District Attorney Abel Reyna and others as prosecutors because they were present while some of the people arrested were processed.
May 17, 2016 — One year has passed since the Twin Peaks shootout. As part of its one-year coverage, the Trib published the following articles:
-Attorney Abigail Anastasio files a motion in Waco’s 54th State District Court seeking to disqualify McLennan County DA Abel Reyna and assistants Michael Jarrett and Mark Parker from prosecuting the Twin Peaks cases because she alleges they are potential witnesses because of the way Reyna inserted himself into the investigation on the evening of the shootout.
May 20 - Three more bikers file federal civil rights lawsuits against the city, county and state officials, alleging unlawful arrest and due process violations. That brings the number of civil rights plaintiffs to 10.
May 28 - The three Waco police officers who fired shots during the Twin Peaks shootout remain on administrative duties more than a year after the incident that left nine bikers dead and more than 20 wounded. Police chief Brent said he does not know when the DA intends to present the officer-involved shooting cases to a grand jury.
June 3 - Three more bikers file federal civil rights lawsuits against Waco and state officials. All 13 who have filed suit in Austin federal court so far are represented by Dallas attorney Don Tittle. The suit alleges unlawful arrest and due process violations and claims the plaintiffs were arrested with no evidence that they committed any crimes or had any ties to warring biker groups the Bandidos or the Cossacks.
June 3 - U.S. District Judge Sam Sparks questions whether McLennan County DA Reyna, as a defendant in the civil cases, has a financial interest at stake and should be disqualified from prosecuting criminal cases against the bikers. He suggests in a pretrial conference that the Twin Peaks bikers’ criminal cases can’t proceed until Reyna is replaced because of a conflict of interest.
June 10 - Attorney Abigail Anastasio's motion to disqualify DA Abel Reyna is postponed to August 8.
June 15 - The Texas Court of Criminal Appeals lifts a gag order issued by 54th State District Judge Matt Johnson in the case of a biker arrested in the Twin Peaks shootout. The one-line opinion let stand an order by the Tenth Court of Appeals that said the judge abused his discretion when he limited pretrial publicity.
July 15 - Two more bikers file federal civil rights lawsuits against local and state officials, claiming they were improperly arrested with no evidence of wrongdoing and denied due process. The total number of bikers in the suit now stands at 15.
July 18 - Additional motions are filed to disqualify McLennan County District Attorney Abel Reyna from prosecuting the biker shootout cases. The motion says Reyna and his assistants arrived at the scene within hours of the shooting and “inserted themselves into the role of investigators.” It alleges they overruled police officials by ordering that anyone with ties to the biker groups Bandidos or Cossacks be arrested on first-degree felony engaging in organized criminal activity charges.
Aug. 3 - Former McLennan County Sheriff's Office jail lieutenant Jennifer Howell is indicted on a third-degree felony charge, accused of providing one of the gang members arrested after the deadly Twin Peaks shooting with law enforcement information in the months leading up to the melee. Officials think she was involved in a romantic relationship with the man she provided the official information to, according to an arrest affidavit.
Aug. 8 - At a hearing in Waco’s 54th State District Court, two Twin Peaks bikers sought to disqualify McLennan County District Attorney Abel Reyna from prosecuting their cases. Reyna and former Waco Police Chief Brent Stroman testified that it was ultimately Stroman’s decision to arrest all 177 bikers.
Reyna said he was told a busload of bikers had already been processed and released before he arrived at the Waco Convention Center, where bikers were being processed. Once Reyna got there, the release of bikers ended, Waco police officials testified. Reyna said it was Stroman who made the call that there was sufficient probable cause to arrest the bikers en masse, but it was Reyna and his assistants who decided to charge them all with engaging in organized criminal activity.
Stroman said that in nearly eight years as chief, he can’t recall Reyna going to another crime scene. After making the decision to arrest the bikers, Stroman said he asked Reyna and his assistants to help draft affidavits to support the arrests.
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