More Questions About Waco Biker Brawl

“Despite the characterization by police that the afternoon gathering at a Twin Peaks restaurant in Waco, Texas that led to Sunday’s bloody shooting incident was a gathering of criminal biker gangs with violent intent, the meeting appears to have been a legitimate, organized gathering of motorcycle riders meeting to discuss political issues,” brietbart.com reports. ” The group that met was the Texas Confederation of Clubs and Independents (CoC&I) and a look at that group’s website and history gives a very different impression of the group’s purpose and goals than what has been said repeatedly by Waco police Sgt. W. Patrick Swanton.” In other words, the gathering was not a planned confrontation. This fact adds some weight to rumors surrounding the police’s response to the violence, specifically . . .

the $1m bail requirement for all 170 people arrested at the Twin Peaks restaurant. The thinking: for whatever reason, good or bad, the cops opened fire on the bikers, wounding and killing at least some of the civilians (nine dead). Supposedly, the extraordinary number of people arrested and the stratospheric bail requirement reflect law enforcement’s desire to keep a lid on the actual events that resulted in the fatalities.

Supposedly, the reported subsequent vendetta against the cops indicates the gangs’ belief that their brothers were mowed down by the police.

Only one of the 170 people arrested has so far made bail. He’s not spoken to the media. The rest of those detained are under lock and key until their arraignment. It could be weeks before they appear before a judge. By the time eyewitness testimony emerges – which could arrive from the defendants’ lawyers – the story will have “cooled-off.”

Ahead of an exposition of the facts of the violence itself, questions are being raised about the large police presence in the first place.

The very political nature of the Texas Confederation of Clubs and Independents and its website raise troubling First Amendment questions about the police trying to pressure a business to shut down a lawful political meeting that had never led to problems previously, regardless of the people at that meeting.

As far as I know, the video above is the only raw footage of the shooting. It was filmed after the action. It shows the police aiming rifles at the crime scene.

On Tuesday, The Justice of the Peace in Waco released a preliminary autopsy of the men killed in the incident [as reported by nbcfdw.com]. One of the nine died from a neck wound. Three of the nine died from head shots. Two died from unspecified gunshot wounds and one died from a trunk wound.

Cops aren’t trained to shoot for the head – undercutting the “police massacre” meme rolling round the biker websites. That said, the autopsy report didn’t state what type of ammunition caused the fatalities. If the dead were killed by rifle rounds, that would be an important data point. As would any first-hand description of events. We’re likely to get the latter, eventually. The former? Who knows? [h/t DR]

comments

  1. avatar Gordon Wagner says:

    I think that the story will turn out to be panicked NYPD-style firing into a crowd.

    1. avatar JasonM says:

      Why? Did somebody shoot a dog?

      1. avatar Benny the Jew says:

        Hey-OOOO!

    2. avatar Jonathan - Houston says:

      Perhaps , but even so, like Boston (1770), that wouldn’t be enough to prevent this from this being regarded as the”Waco Massacre”, if that takes root.

  2. avatar Removed_californian says:

    Not that I (dis)trust the Waco PD, but I much rather see all the evidence before I draw conclusion. Headed back there this fall but still not concerned about this stuff. Not like it’s an everyday thing.

  3. avatar Mark N. says:

    There is another piece of raw film I have been unable to locate on the internet shot by someone inside the restaurant. It was provided exclusively to the AP. The people inside the restaurant, which was quiet, scrambled away from the windows when the shooting started, with bikers piling into the men’s room until it was too full.Others assisted bystanders to the back of the restaurant to get away from the gunfire. It is probable that the Waco police will have a really hard time pinning any charges on any of the people inside the restaurant. Th arrests seem to be “let’s arrest them all, then sort it out later.” Not a wise policy. Could be Waco will be paying some large civil rights settlements in a few years.

  4. avatar Jeff Fisher says:

    One biker was shot through the head INTO the trunk of the body. That makes me think rifle. Shots to the head or neck can cause death very easily, of course. We’ll see…

  5. avatar Hannibal says:

    “organized gathering of motorcycle riders meeting to discuss political issues…”

    Yeah, sure it was. It’s amazing the kinds of things people will swallow if it gives them a chance to assume cops are creating a coverup. It’s also funny that these gangs have been trying the public relations angle for decades (charity rides here and there between meth runs) to cultivate that they’re just guys who like bikes and happen to keep getting arrested for stuff. The bloods and crips are just starting to learn from this and tried it during the Baltimore riots. I think it started with the mafia.

    1. avatar Not Jimbo says:

      I don’t know what the mix was at this incident, but most Motorcycle Clubs (“MC” is a pretty well defined and regulated organization) or Riding Clubs (Riding Clubs are more casually organized and unregulated) are just a bunch of folks who love to ride and will organize charity rides to marry their hobby to their generosity. This I know because I’ve known several folks who have been members of MC’s and Riding Clubs.
      The 1% MC’s (I think the Bandidos are the only 1% MC in Texas) hold a certain amount of influence over the other MC’s (if you wear colors, you have to give respect to the Bandidos – as a rider, I never wear colors of any kind), but any (alleged) illegal activities are generally kept within their 1% ranks.
      You may be assigning your prejudices for 1% MC’s to all MC’s and Riding clubs, and I just wanted to provide a little background.

      1. avatar Jon says:

        Looks like this has become a pro outlaw biker blog!!!

        These were not peaceful motorcycle clubs as you would like to claim. 8 of the 9 killed were members of the Cossacks motorcycle club and 1 was a member of the Bandido motorcycle club. Both clubs are outlaw(1%ers) motorcycle clubs.

        Sad: From gun rights forum to an outlaw motorcycle club forum. What is your connection to these clubs Robert?

        1. avatar Geoff PR says:

          “Looks like this has become a pro outlaw biker blog!!!”

          –snip–

          “Sad: From gun rights forum to an outlaw motorcycle club forum. What is your connection to these clubs Robert?”

          From TTAG’s ‘about us’ page:

          “Robert Farago founded The Truth About Guns in February of 2010 to explore the ethics, morality, business, politics, culture, technology, practice, strategy, dangers and fun of guns.”

          The Waco incident falls squarely into the ‘culture’ of guns.

          Hence, the discussion of such.

        2. avatar Indiana Tom says:

          Sad: From gun rights forum to an outlaw motorcycle club forum. I am going to ride a pink Vespa!

        3. avatar Ed says:

          I’m just sitting here wondering “…when did rights become ‘bikers rights’ ‘gun rights’ ‘gay rights’ ‘female rights’ ‘childrens rights’ ‘hobos rights’ ?
          I thought the bill of rights and the constitution were for EVERYONE, silly me.
          Just because you can’t relate to a certain group of people doesn’t mean they deserve their rights less than you.

        4. avatar JR_in_NC says:

          “Just because you can’t relate to a certain group of people doesn’t mean they deserve their rights less than you.”

          +10,000,000

          At least.

        5. avatar John L. says:

          Indiana Tom: I didn’t know you were British. 😉

        6. avatar Not Jimbo says:

          @Jon – point of order, but the Cossacks are not a 1% MC. Some of it’s members may undertake illegal activity (heck, I go over the speed limit every time I get on a bike) but that doesn’t make them a 1% MC.

        7. avatar josh says:

          He’s not associated with any from what we all know and read, why cant you accept that “maybe” the cops just screwed up…like you believe thats “impossible” for a cop to panic shoot. Or anyone for that matter. you’re kinda like sharpton. Who are you to judge, do you ride, do you know anyone with the texas independents, do you know anything of the motorcycle community,or do you work for the WACO PD? Narrative is key, if all you do is listen to cnn, or think sons of anarchy is a true depiction of the majority of people that happen to love riding, then please do Robert a big favor and STFU

    2. avatar Mark N. says:

      True of course, but then from what I’ve read, 5 of the dead had no criminal records. Guilt by association? If one is bad, we should kill them all? Or is it also possible that some of these killed or wounded were merely bystanders who had committed no crime?

      1. avatar Geoff PR says:

        “True of course, but then from what I’ve read, 5 of the dead had no criminal records.”

        The gangs have been actively recruiting members with clean records to carry the weapons for ones who are felons.

        Apparently, there’s not a limit on how many guns someone with a carry permit can carry at one time.

        Since they tend to move around in packs, they act as rolling armories.

        1. avatar miforest says:

          seems suspicious to me that there was not a single dash cam, body cam on all those cops and cars.
          I have read that a majority of the bikers arrested had no prior criminal record.
          I’ve also noticed the “weapons count” of guns seized has fallen from “over 1000” to “118”.

    3. avatar Grindstone says:

      Still stuck in the 60’s? Get your head out of your ass. Not everyone who rides a bike, is part of a club, and wears black leather is an evil, evil bad guy. People like you are, though.

      1. avatar John in Ohio says:

        You Meet the Nicest People on a Honda. 🙂

    4. avatar Cuteandfuzzybunnies says:

      Oh yea and bikers against child abuse is not a real kids charity. MY ASS. Most bikers are not criminals in the least bit. Most are just guys who ride motorcycles. Most biker “gangs”‘are a lot more like the elks than the crips.

      Now I do know that banditos do engage in some drug biz, and likely other crimes too more frequently BUT these guys may sell drugs to be bikers BUT they are NOT bikers to sell drugs.

  6. avatar Benny the Jew says:

    “…one died from a trunk wound.”

    Given the political nature of this meeting, is it safe to say they were targeting republicans?

  7. avatar Ralph says:

    Cops aren’t trained to shoot for the head

    No, but every once in a while they hit something, like a dog, a bystander or a cranium.

    1. avatar Gov. William J. Le Petomane says:

      Fully automatic rifles tend to rise up when you flip the giggle switch.

  8. avatar Yee says:

    Well well well… cops are 9/9 on kill shots. Who would’ve thought?

    Will the Waco play of slandering the victims as child molesters come next?

  9. A political meeting? With two of the most violent motorcycle gangs in the nation, The Cossacks and The Bandidos?

    1. avatar Anon in CT says:

      Sure, like the meetings of the Five Families in the Godfather movies.

  10. avatar Grindstone says:

    If all 9 were killed by police fire, I doubt it will get any sympathy in the media. So far everyone is characterized as an evil, evil biker gang member. Guilt by generalization and ignorance. I’m surprised there’s been no youtube videos of the brawl or anything else, and typically there’s someone filming a fight for quick youtube stardom.

    This whole thing has some very serious implications, even without the context of other recent police actions.

    1. avatar Sian says:

      Outlaw biker with a clean record: deserved it

      Career criminal with a violent record longer than your arm: An innocent unarmed boy just turning his life around

      Got it.

      1. avatar josh says:

        its true isnt it, its like we live in a nation that rewards the wrong and weak. “you said something that hurt my feeling, so now im going to sue you for one mil” its like seriously…. darwin’s theory has failed because your genes should have died out a long time ago.

  11. avatar Larry says:

    The domanite club in the area holds a little more than ” a certain amount of influence “. You don’t wear a 3 patch in their area without high risk of a physical assault .

    So you become a support club And your patch sports their colors and you do what they tell you or you fight them , no,other options .

  12. avatar Gov. William J. Le Petomane says:

    Headline right next to this story on Breitbart; Capitol Police Get Special Training: How to Go to the Bathroom Without Losing Their Guns

    http://www.breitbart.com/big-government/2015/05/21/capitol-police-get-potty-training-after-leaving-guns-in-bathrooms/

  13. avatar Stinkeye says:

    People, PLEASE hold your phone horizontally when filming. That is all.

  14. avatar Former Water Walker says:

    So it was a police riot sorta’ like Chicago Dem convention in 1968? Got it. Just a peaceful confab.

  15. avatar John Gancho says:

    Outlaw bikers are such a bunch of posey wannabe losers.

    1. avatar Garrison Hall says:

      Actually, they’re often not all that much different from some cops. In fact, more than a few ARE cops or former cops.

  16. avatar Troutbum5 says:

    The willful ignorance and contempt here should be surprising, but it isn’t. Sons of Anarchy and Gangland are not even close to the truth.

    The CoC is legitimate, many states have them, and they exist to prevent what happened Sunday they are also function as a lobby group for motorcyclist interests, such as helmet laws. As far as I know, this is the first time there has been any violence at a CoC meeting. Nobody wants the blowback that something like this brings. Aside from the hard facts (number of dead, wounded and arrested), the only sure thing is that something, or more than likely just one thing, went horribly wrong.

    I’m not pointing fingers or blaming anyone, but the information coming from the police SMELLS, and it has been incredibly inaccurate and inflammatory. But then, it’s no different than the bs the press spouts for the first several days after any other shooting.

    1. avatar Garrison Hall says:

      Things in Waco are going to get very interesting when the lawyers start showing up. The cops are trying to sweat the bikers into become hostile witnesses against the other bikers. All they need are one or two willing to say what they’re told to say. The bikers, no dummies, are waiting for the lawyers to show up. If this is basically a case of a parking-lot brawl, gun or no gun, the Waco cops have a lot of explaining to do. This won’t be pretty.

      1. avatar Geoff PR says:

        That’s what I was wondering. So far we have:

        100+ bikers held on 1 million bail EACH.

        No way in hell can those guys sh!t the $100,000 to walk out of county lockup.

        Are they using that to squeeze the bikers?

        Some of those guys have families, they won’t have their jobs in short order.

    2. avatar Chuck in IL says:

      It’s nice to see someone understands what the actual meeting was about. These meetings take place all the time in TX. It wasn’t an outlaw only meeting, it was a meeting of different motorcycle clubs, some of which are considered to be criminal clubs. Somebody got their shorts in a wad, which resulted in a parking lot brawl. My first instinct says the massive police presence made the situation worse, and if the real truth comes out I’ll bet the vast majority of fatal gunshots came from the police. It’s a clusterfvck all the way down.

  17. avatar Ragnar says:

    If it was a peaceful meet, why all the chains, knives, clubs, guns?

    1. avatar Garrison Hall says:

      Those are not necessarily illegal.

      1. avatar Troutbum5 says:

        I’ll wager a bet that the majority of “chains” were attached to wallets. And every biker I know carries a knife, just as most of the people here do.

        1. avatar John in Ohio says:

          Going by the OP’s reasoning… Since there was probably cash in those wallets they were obviously there to buy illicit drugs and hookers.

    2. avatar Steve says:

      So if you are intending a peaceful day you should not be permitted to carry?

    3. avatar John in Ohio says:

      When I go to the grocery store, my gun and pocket knife go along. Does that mean my grocery run is not peaceful? The exercise of the right to bear arms does not mean that the intent of the meeting wasn’t peaceful.

  18. avatar Dustin says:

    A shady establishment that I frequent had 7 Outlaws show up out of the blue. Everyone whispered, but then they turned out the be the most fun, jovial, Santa Claus types you could ever expect to meet. They thought MY bike was too hardcore for them… Lols!

    Cops decided to kill a bunch of people in an already-established stereotype/demographic, lie about it to the media, a step beyond fixing it in the report… Perfectly timed to try to stop Open Carry. Cops just decided to start killing. Period.

    If any facts ever come out about this, it’ll be too late to matter.

  19. avatar Dustin says:

    They’re doing everything they can to keep the truth under wraps…

  20. avatar kap says:

    sounds like a Set down, other wise their would not have been enough cops
    hope for the cops sake it was considered a righteous shoot other wise ???

  21. avatar Steven02 says:

    Be careful when you say it would be important to know if it was rifle rounds. My understanding was that AK style weapons were found with the bikers as well. We need more specifics than rifle rounds.

    1. avatar Taylor TX says:

      I remember reading on Breitbart yesterday an AK pattern rifle was recovered as well.

  22. avatar JT says:

    “As would any first-hand description of events.”

    They are already out there.

    “The shove in the bathroom became a scuffle in the restaurant. When about 30 Bandidos, Cossacks, Scimitars and other bikers spilled into the parking between the Twin peaks and the Don Carlos Mexican restaurant next door, the police were waiting for them. The scuffle became a knife fight and several men were stabbed. When one of the combatants produced a gun the Swat team opened fire with automatic weapons. Multiple sources have told The Aging Rebel that all of the dead were killed by police.”

    http://www.agingrebel.com/12873

  23. avatar explainist says:

    The Council of clubs has existed for a very long time. They are the UN of MCs. they exist precisely to facilitate negotiation. they were trying to settle their differences peacefully. my experience with cops makes me believe that getting to the truth will require a great deal of digging at a stonewall

  24. avatar Joseph says:

    They were trying to resolved their differences peacefully? Right, that’s why there were over a hundred firearms confiscated. How many times do you think there are that many firearms at any given event, other than motorcycle “clubs.” Typical of this site to blame the cops for a biker gang shootout. Your dog jokes are rather stale as well.

    1. avatar John in Ohio says:

      I’m armed practically anywhere I go. Most of my friends do likewise. Anytime, anywhere we get together there would naturally be a group of armed individuals. Even though I am a biker, this is nothing unique to MC clubs. Only a couple of my friends ride yet almost all of them are armed.

  25. avatar FlaBoy says:

    The New York Daily News reported “police have not determined who fired the fatal shots.” and add that the police do admit they fired on the bikers, but it is “not clear” how many bikers where shot by police officers. … that implies the police are admitting at least some where shot by police … maybe more than a few … I wonder if they will release the true autopsy findings, since the police where they only ones with rifles, or just say “bullet wounds” without giving caliber used.

  26. avatar BIG AL says:

    As usual, the LEOs hide behind cars while people get shot. Way to go heros!

  27. avatar daniel l says:

    The big questions is how many were killed by the government. The smaller question i wanna know is how many rounds were fired by the bikers and how many by the police? The police sustained zero injuries correct? So when did they decide to open fire, and was it a command decision, or one cop fired and it was on. We may never know what happened, but how many police were there, and did they use a riot as an excuse…..if all dead bikers were killed by gunfire, and the cops did all the killing, then this smells really bad

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