McLennan County has released autopsy reports on nine bikers killed in the May 17 Twin Peaks shootout, the Waco Tribune-Herald reported Thursday. Not included with information released to the public are the ballistic reports, leaving open questions of who fired fatal shots . . .
“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 news report explained. “The newly-released reports do not indicate who killed which men…”
This lack of complete and timely disclosures by investigating agencies adds to the serious, as-yet unanswered questions about the role authorities have played, not just in the shootout, but also as to decisions made by the district attorney and the State District Court judge. As TTAG reported earlier this month, 16 news organizations have filed suit fighting a gag order imposed (and since reversed) by Judge Matt Johnson at the request of his former law partner, DA Abel Reyna. That order had kept a video of the shooting from public scrutiny, as well as shut down lawyers, law enforcement and witnesses from talking about a case where 177 individuals have been charged with organized criminal activities.
With those questions still unanswered, this latest development can only further fuel conjecture that information is being withheld for reasons other than the potential to taint a jury pool. Among new concerns are why the ballistics tests, on what appears to be a local law enforcement matter, have been taken over by a federal agency. And why, after almost three months, ballistics testing has not yet been completed and reported — especially after ATF pledged this case was “being given top priority over other cases.” Watch this space.