EYEWITNESS LOCAL NEWS"AVENGERS" SHOOTING
from Eyewitness News Online
A Biker Gang Is Blamed For Shooting At State Troopers
Reported by: Ashley Smith
Videographer: John Tincher
Web Producer: Ashley Smith
Reported: Mar. 29, 2012 5:57 PM EDT
Updated: Mar. 29, 2012 6:32 PM EDT
Harper , West Virginia
"I think it goes to show the erosion of morals in this country and a lack of respect for law enforcement," said West Virginia State Police Sgt. Mike Baylous.
Wednesday afternoon three undercover state troopers found themselves the target of an apparent biker gang incident. According to police around 3:00 in the afternoon on Route 3 near Harper, WV four men belonging to the biker club “The Avengers” began making threatening gestures. The troopers decided to pull over to show the bikers their identification.
"As they went past them one of them turned around and fired at the troopers," said Baylous.
35-year-old Thomas Speck of Michigan was the alleged gunman. As a result of the shooting Speck wrecked his bike. He then got on the back of another man’s motorcycle and they all fled the scene.
"While they were there still on the scene a short time later, two of those members came back through the scene in a pickup truck and at that time were apprehended," said Baylous.
Later in the day, police arrested the other two men.
51-year-old Delmer Cozart and 55-year-old Clyde Frank along with 32-year-old James Morris, Jr. are charged with wanton endangerment among other charges. And Speck is facing the most charges at this time.
"It's sad that anyone would take a shot at a trooper let alone anybody on the road," said Bill White of Nitro, WV.
Bill White is an avid Harley rider and says these kinds of things give bikers a bad name.
"Not all bikers are bad. I mean some of them do a lot of good. It's a sad situation and I hate to hear that," said White.
His son Justin is a member of a biker club in North Carolina. He says their club does a lot of good for the community.
"We come together as a family. We treat each other as brothers and sisters," said Justin White.
Sgt. Baylous says there is no reason to raise concern about any biker gang.
"Hopefully this was just an isolated incident. The public should not be concerned that there would be further threats from this," said Baylous.
Baylous could not say why the bikers were being followed to begin with but he did say more charges could be filed against these men.
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