Biker gang clash in No Cal leaves one man seriously injured *

Thanks to a nice email tip, my attention was drawn to the Eureka Times-Standard, which details a bar shooting in Old Town Eureka that left a man wounded. Eureka’s police chief told the paper that the shooting stemmed from a clash between Hells Angels and Mongols bikers.

(My question is, how did they know they were Mongols since the Mongols are forbidden from wearing their logo?)
Anyway here’s a link to the story and an excerpt or two:

A Merced man was seriously wounded after he was shot outside The Shanty in Eureka late Friday night, and four men were arrested on suspicion of attempted murder shortly afterward.

Robert Daniel Thompson, 43, of Merced was found lying in the intersection of Third and C streets, bleeding from several gunshot wounds, when police arrived at about 11:10 p.m. About five minutes later, officers stopped a vehicle at Watson and D streets and arrested four men believed to be involved in the shooting.

<snip>

Eureka Police Chief Garr Nielsen said earlier Saturday that the shooting may have stemmed from the longtime battle between the Hell’s Angels and Mongols motorcycle gangs, but detectives have not been able to confirm that.


*Who doesn’t love Google magic?

Turns out the victim in this case might be a Hell’s Angel who is a registered sex offender and a onetime suspect in a 20-year-old double homicide.

Here’s a couple of links of interest:
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Questions about Doc

This comes from Aging Rebel:

Maybe the Feds have the Mongols by the huevos. Maybe after, numerous attempts over the last 30 years, the Department of Justice is finally, actually going to deconstruct a major outlaw motorcycle club. Maybe not. But, don’t dismiss the possibility. “The future right now,” former Mongol Tony Vodnik rhetorically asked the Associated Press yesterday. [...]

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Mongols in the spotlight in Tuesday’s Column

About the time Ruben “Doc” Cavazos published his autobiography, “Honor Few, Fear None,” his life as an outlaw motorcycle gang member began to come apart.

The book, published in June, tells Cavazos’ story and includes re-tellings of violent episodes between members of the gang and outsiders.

To hear “Doc” tell it, the Mongols were taking on an assortment of gangs in an international turf battle that stretched beyond the San Gabriel Valley.

Last week a federal grand jury handed down an 84-count racketeering indictment against Cavazos and dozens of other Mongols. It detailed allegations including murder, attempted murder, gun possessions, racial attacks, maimings and drug offenses.

As part of the criminal case, the government barred members of the gang from wearing clothing displaying the Mongols’ logo.

Here’s how the book jacket pitches Cavazos’ story:

“In reality, the Mongols are a tightly knit band of brothers devoted in equal measure to the club, their fellow Mongols, and their freedom. They live to enjoy life, party and travel the open road. Above all, they demand respect. When pushed too far, Mongols join together to push back. Just ask the Hells Angels, the Ukrainian mafia, the Mexican mafia and the U.S. government. All have tested the Mongols’ resolve.

“Doc takes you to the streets and into the bars, the secret meetings, the brawls, and the shoot-outs, all proof that if you live like a Mongol does, you must honor few, fear none.”

But why buy the book when the indictment lays out some of the same excitement without the hyperbole?

For example, on the day the book was published by HarperCollins, Cavazos awarded patches to two members accused of stabbing two innocent by-standers at a Mobil gas station in Pasadena on April 6.

They were among the last patches Cavazos awarded.

As Cavazos embarked on a high-profile tour of swanky bookstores in upscale neighborhoods like Beverly Hills, other members of the gang began to grumble about his leadership.

Principle among their complaints was Cavazos’ penchant for recruiting street gang members and a loss of hundreds of thousands of dollars of Mongol money.

Cavazos frequently hit up his buddies for contributions to a Mongols legal fund. The money began to go missing.

Finally on Aug. 30, at the “House Lounge” in Vernon, Hector “Largo” Gonzalez and William Munz told the rest of the gang that “Doc” was stealing from them.

They also pointed to tensions between the gang and La Eme and voted Cavazos “out bad” from the organization.

“Out Bad” – sounds like a good title for the sequel.

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Judge gives U.S. authority over Mongols trademark

The US attorney wanted to own the trademarked logo of the Mongols outlaw motorcycle gang and a judge granted that request Wednesday, according to an Associated Press reporter who attended an afternoon hearing in federal court:

Here’s the top of the story:

18160-Mongols_logo-thumb-100x120-thumb-100x120.jpg

LOS ANGELES — A federal judge in Los Angeles bars the Mongols motorcycle gang from selling or distributing its trademarked logo after authorities arrested dozens of its members in six states.

 

No word yet if Ruben Cavazos has appeared in court or entered a plea. Cavazos, a former president of the group, is targeted as the head of the conspiracy.

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Beaten to death with a pool cue by Mongols *

The single homicide alleged in the federal indictment against members of the Mongols Motorcycle Club occurred on Valentine’s Day last year.

The victim apparently was Leon Huddleston, a homeless man who was beaten to death with a pool cue at a bar in Lancaster.

Here’s a recap of the beating from a Web site known as the Antelope Valley War on Gangs and Crime.

Meanwhile, members of the outlaw motorcycle gang are expected to appear in federal court later today.

* Here’s what Jill Levoy wrote in the Homicide Report last year following Huddleston’s death:

Leon Huddleston, a 25-year-old white man, was beaten with a pool cue at 227 W. Pillsbury St. in Lancaster and died at 7:10 p.m. Feb. 22.

Huddleston, described by police as a local transient, was playing pool at Young’s Bar and Grill when two men came in, walked straight up to him, and hit him with a pool cue. Huddleston fell behind the bar. No argument or brawl preceded the attack. Detectives say they don’t know the motive. Huddleston “didn’t even have a chance to defend himself,” said Sgt. Jeff Cochran of the Sheriff’s Homicide Bureau.

The suspects fled, and a handful of bar patrons who witnessed the attack also left the scene. Huddleston lived for a week on life support before dying. Los Angeles County supervisors have offered a $10,000 reward for information in this case. Anyone with tips is asked to call detectives at (323) 890-5635.

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Mongols talking points

This comes from a hand-out reporter Emma Gallegos received this morning at the Montebello Police Department:

  • The investigation was handled by the ATF the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department, the Montebello PD and the Las Vegas Metro PD.
  • ATF agents, deputies and police officers obtained 160 search warrants and 110 arrest warrants for the sweep this morning.
  • 1500 cops were involved in the various searches and arrests. Warrants were served in California, Nevada, Colorado, Oregon, Washington and Ohio.
  • Mongols members are being charged with murder, attempted murder, assault, firearms violations, and narcotics violations. The prosecution will be a RICO case.
  • The Mongols and their associates are a heavily armed and violent cang. There are approximately 600 members in the US and 400 of those memberrs are in California. The gang was recruiting street gang members.
  • Among those arrested were former Mongols National President Rueben “Doc” Cavazos.
  • The sweep is this second time since 2001 that the gang has been targeted by federal authorities.

 

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Motorcycle clubs take over Palm Springs for American Heat

Less than a week after what may have been a shooting between rival motorcycle gangs on area freeways, thousands of bikers are descending on Palm Springs this morning as part of the American Heat rally. The shooting resulted in the death of Manuel Martin, of Venice.

Here’s what FOX 11 is reporting about the rally:

No problems were reported this afternoon during the first hours of a motorcycle rally in downtown Palm Springs that is expected to draw 10,000 cyclists, a police lieutenant said.

“It looks like a good start and we have had no problems reported so far,” said Palm Springs police Lt. John Booth.

Hundreds of booths have been set up on Palm Canyon Drive — the city’s main drag — for the 2008 American Heat Motorcycle Weekend, which began at 2 p.m.

Palm Canyon Drive, from Alejo to Baristo roads, will remain shut down until 9 p.m. Sunday, said city spokeswoman Amy Blaisdell.

The event will feature stunt shows, live entertainment and motorcycle vendors.

Police Chief David Dominguez told the Desert Sun he does not expect any violence during the event, despite past conflicts in California among rival motorcycle gangs.

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Outlaw motorcycle gangs not ruled out in shooting death

This is the latest in the strange and terrible saga of Manuel Martin’s’ death at the intersection of the 2 and the 210 freeways was the result of an ongoing feud between the Hell’s Angels and Mongols motorcycle clubs. Here’s Nathan McIntire’s update:


GLENDALE – Police are searching for a dark-colored car that may have been involved in the shooting death of a motorcyclist on the Glendale (2) Freeway.

An autopsy was performed on the victim Thursday, but the results were not available, authorities said.
Manuel Vincent Martin, 30, suffered a bullet wound in the chest but had no other major visible injuries, according to Los Angeles County Department of Coroner spokesman Craig Harvey.
Police confirmed Thursday that another motorcyclist riding with Martin was wearing a Mongols Motorcycle Club T-shirt. The Mongols, a biker gang that originated in Montebello in the 1970s, has been warring with the Hell’s Angels.
Gang involvement is being investigated as a possible motive in the slaying, according to Glendale Police Department Sgt. Tom Lorenz.
Several people showed up to the crime scene following the shooting, Lorenz said.
“The apparel that they were wearing indicated an association with the Mongols,” he said. “There was one individual with a Mongol tatoo.”
“The Police Department has not ruled out any outlaw biker activity that may have caused this event,” he added.

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