Trial of Chad Wilson, 32, of Lynnwood, Wash., and John Midmore, 34, of Valparaiso, Ind. will kick off this fall in a Minnehaha County courtroom.The two Hells Angels bikers are charged with shooting at and injuring six members of a rival gang, the Outlaws, at the 2006 Sturgis Motorcycle Rally.To accommodate witnesses, the trial won't start until November. That's the latest in a series of complicated procedural delays that have stalled the trial. But here's a timeline of the events so far.
Two men pull up outside Legion Lake Resort in Custer State Park in the afternoon and open fire on a small group of people, according to witnesses at a campground across the street. Six are injured - five by gunfire - and the men speed away.
The same night, Wilson and Midmore are arrested and charged with five counts of attempted murder. The South Dakota Attorney General's Office identifies the victims as members or associates of the Outlaws and Wilson as a member of the Hells Angels. Midmore was described as a prospect for the Hells Angels. Experts and law enforcement officials say the two gangs have been at war.In the first court action, Custer County States Attorney Tracey Kelley argues successfully that the Hells Angels are capable of coming up with massive amounts of bail money. Bail for Wilson and Midmore is set at $5 million each. Court documents say authorities found a .40 caliber magazine on the floorboard of a truck leased to Wilson, and that investigators collected 16 spent cartridges from the scene.The rally ends without retaliation, as the Outlaws pack up their campground and leave the Black Hills.
Both suspects are arraigned in Rapid City. Wilson is charged with five counts of attempted first-degree murder and one count of conspiracy to commit a crime. Midmore is charged with five counts of aiding, abetting or advising attempted first-degree murder and a count of conspiracy. Both plead not guilty in what the judge calls a "free-for-all shooting."The trial of Wilson and Midmore is scheduled for June.
The trial is postponed until Sept. 24 because of an argument over defense requests to have evidence - a gun clip - tested by their own expert.After the trial is again delayed, prosecutors protest Circuit Judge John Delaney's decision, at the request of the defense, to seal documents from an independent test on a vehicle allegedly used in the crime. Prosecutors also object to closed meetings between the judge and defense attorneys. The South Dakota Supreme Court agrees to hear the appeal, further delaying the trial.Arguing before the state Supreme Court, special prosecutor and Beadle County State's Attorney Michael Moore says prosecutors should have been present for the meetings about evidence.The high court agrees with the prosecutor. Delaney's ruling regarding testing of the truck is overturned. A hearing should have been held to allow arguments from both prosecutors and defense lawyers before Delaney dealt with the defense request to examine a pickup that is evidence in the case, the high court said.Retired Judge Gene Paul Kean hears the case as Midmore and Wilson plead not guilty to new, superceding counts: one count of conspiracy to commit first-degree murder, five counts of attempted first-degree murder and one count of commission of a felony while armed. Kean rejected prosecutors' requests to include information about previous convictions.The judge rules in favor of a motion to bring the case to Sioux Falls. The trial is scheduled for Nov. 3.
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