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Thursday, 14 August 2008

Hells Angels members Chad Wilson, 32, of Lynnwood, Wash., a suburb of Seattle, and John Midmore, 34, of Valparaiso, Ind., were arrested,

Authorities identified the man injured in an Aug. 9 shooting in Sturgis as Joseph Patrick McGuire, 33, of Imperial Beach, Calif., and the shooter as Ronald Smith, 43, of Seattle, Wash.The Seattle Police Department confirmed Sunday that one of its officers, who was vacationing at the rally with four fellow officers, was involved in the shooting at the Loud American Roadhouse bar shortly after 1 a.m. on Aug. 9.
According to The Associated Press, all five officers were relieved of duty pending an investigation by South Dakota authorities. The SPD sent a team of investigators to Sturgis to gather more information on the shooting. The vacationing officers have since returned to Washington, according to Seattle area media.
Twenty-five witnesses spent seven hours Sunday testifying before a Meade County grand jury about what they saw during the shooting at the crowded Main Street bar. Sondreal said the investigation may continue until the grand jury convenes again on Aug. 27.A grand jury investigation was the best way to handle any charges that may result from the shooting, he said.“Given the magnitude, complexity and number of out-of-state witnesses in this case, this was the only logical venue for the next step in the process,” he said.Smith is a detective who works for the Seattle police Pawn Shop Squad and is a police guild board member. The officer also is known throughout the department as an avid motorcycle rider.Seattle police declined to comment Monday on whether it was legal for Smith to have a gun on him in the Loud American Roadhouse, because he was off duty at the time.The Law Enforcement Officers Safety Act of 2004 would technically allow Smith to have a concealed weapon at any time and would supersede any laws regarding concealed weapons in South Dakota.
However, that act would not apply if Smith was intoxicated, which is information that authorities have not released.There also is a clause in the act that mentions disciplinary action disqualifying an officer from carrying a gun, but Seattle Police declined to comment on whether Smith’s past disciplinary record would disqualify him. The Seattle Post Intelligencer has reported that the police department disciplined for taunting fans at a football game and another time for allegedly threatening to shoot a restaurant manager who had asked him to leave.
South Dakota Attorney General’s Office spokeswoman Sara Rabern said state authorities do not know yet if Smith would meet the requirements of the safety act.
The Post Intelligencer has reported that Seattle police union leaders believe a videotape taken at the scene will exonerate Smith of any wrongdoing in the altercation."I think it’s going to be pretty evident that the officer was fearful of his safety and life and that’s why he had to fire," Sgt. Rich O'Neill, president of the Seattle Police Officers' Guild told the newspaper.
Time line from From Reporter scanners after the shooting:At 1:32 a.m., a request was made for an airlift to Regional Hospital. Rapid City and Pennington County officers were directed to the Regional Hospital emergency room for "security issues." At 1:52 a.m., Black Hills LifeFlight advised that four people were on board coming from Sturgis and would be at Regional Hospital in eight minutes.At 1:58 a.m., Sturgis police advised Rapid City dispatch that there were "two or three Angels going to be with their buddy" at the hospital. If more than four arrived, they were to be directed to park at the hospital's rehabilitation unit parking lot, where police were waiting.Later in the night, police were tracking bikers on Interstate 90, checking for their gang "colors."At 3:10 a.m., three more bikers arrived at the emergency room, and an officer said: "They are aware of the rules in the E.R. We're not expecting more, but you never know." Some officers were released from their security posts, and others were told to adjust their positions so they could see into the waiting room.The Sturgis Police Department is investigating the shooting, along with federal, state and county law enforcement agencies.Chief Bush said the last shooting that occurred in Sturgis during a rally was in 1990 inside Gunner's Lounge, also involving two motorcycle clubs.Kinney said the fight and shooting were unusual for his bar.
"In the years we have been doing this, we have almost no trouble during the rally," Kinney said. "It was surreal, that's for sure."
Bush said the incident is not related to the biker-gang shooting in Custer State Park during the 2006 Sturgis motorcycle rally.
As a result of that incident, Hells Angels members Chad Wilson, 32, of Lynnwood, Wash., a suburb of Seattle, and John Midmore, 34, of Valparaiso, Ind., were arrested, accused of shooting at members of the Outlaws biker gang and others Aug. 8, 2006, at Legion Lake Resort in Custer State Park. Five people were wounded in that shooting, but all lived.

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