WACO, Texas (AP/KXXV) - Three bikers have been indicted on murder charges stemming from a 2015 shooting involving police outside a Waco restaurant, including a prominent member of the Bandidos motorcycle club.
The Wednesday indictment marks the first murder charges in the Texas case. It comes just eight days before the statute of limitations runs out.
More than 20 other bikers were re-indicted on new charges ranging from rioting to tampering with evidence.
Police arrested 177 bikers following the shooting that left nine people dead and 20 injured. Investigators say the incident was sparked by rivalries between the Bandidos and Cossacks motorcycle clubs.
Each biker was charged with engaging in organized criminal activity. But prosecutors have dropped at least 126 of those cases since February.
Jeff Battey is among the three Bandidos members charged with murder.
Ray Allen and Glenn Walker are other bikers charged with murder.
Battey's attorney, Seth Sutton released a statement Wednesday afternoon:
If the Reyna regime had wanted the grand jury to get a full and complete picture of the evidence in this matter, they could have reached out to me to present to the grand jury as well. As with the original indictment from 2015, Mr. Reyna clearly did not want the grand jury to hear the truth.
We look forward to the day when we will finally get to present exactly what happened on May 17, 2015 to a jury of twelve McLennan County citizens. It is this kind of misguided prosecution that has wasted millions of taxpayer dollars, has undermined the public confidence in our system of justice, and has produced more than a hundred dismissals with no convictions. As we have maintained from the beginning, we believe that justice will prevail for Mr. Battey and that he will be acquitted of all wrongdoing
The 25 men newly indicted on May 9 include:
Luther's attorney, Clint Broden, released a statement Wednesday afternoon:
One would have thought that the repudiation of Abel Reyna in the March primary would have resonated with Reyna and his assistants. Instead, Reyna appears intent on being the last player at the blackjack table at 3:00 in the morning who keeps doubling down until he is out of chips.
It is particularly ironic that Reyna has now sought an indictment against Mr. Luther for tampering with physical evidence, because the defense possess actual video evidence of law enforcement officials planting evidence on Mr. Luther at the time of his arrest. The District Attorney’s Office is in possession of that same evidence. Indeed, today’s indictment is as specious as the original indictment.
It is fortunate that Reyna’s reign will soon be over and a modicum of justice restored to McLennan County. We are hopeful that, when the new District Attorney takes office and no matter who that person may be, he will quickly clean house of any person in the office that has been connected with this shameful saga.
McLennan County District Attorney Abel Reyna also released a statement:
Today, after considering numerous videos and other evidence, the Grand Jury issued 25 indictments for cases arising out of the Twin Peaks melee. Consistent with statements issued in February of this year, this is the culmination of our office’s reevaluation of those cases as we have worked to focus our efforts and limited resources in the pursuit of justice for the nine people that lost their lives on May 17th, 2015.
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