Shootout Between Rival Biker Gangs Kills 3

3 bikers arrested in violence at annual biker rally in Red River, New Mexico
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted May 29, 2023 12:30 AM CDT
Shootout Between Outlaw Biker Gangs Leaves 3 Dead in NM
Motorcycles line Main Street in Red River, New Mexico, Sunday, May 28, 2023. Three people were killed in a shootout Saturday during a Memorial Day motorcycle rally.   (Chancey Bush/The Albuquerque Journal via AP)

A New Mexico motorcycle rally turned violent Saturday when rival outlaw biker gangs got into a shootout that left three men dead and five others injured in the resort town of Red River. Police say the Bandidos and the Water Dogs were the gangs involved and that two members of the Bandidos and one member of the Water Dogs were killed, KOAT reports. The Albuquerque Journal reports the Bandidos is a well-known motorcycle club that started in Texas in the 1960s but has a strong presence in New Mexico and that law enforcement classifies the group as an outlaw biker gang similar to the Hells Angels, Mongols, Outlaws, and Sons of Silence. The Water Dogs are not as well-known, per the Journal.

Knowing that hundreds of members from the Texas contingent of the Bandidos would be traveling to New Mexico for the 41st annual Red River Memorial Motorcycle Rally, the State Police says it had 32 officers assigned to the event, plus officers from the Red River Marshal’s Office and the Taos County Sheriff’s Office. A previous altercation between the gangs in Albuquerque led to Saturday's shootout, the AP reports. Three bikers were arrested (two of whom were among those injured in the violence) and face charges including murder, cocaine possession, and unlawful carrying of a firearm inside a liquor establishment. “It’s very tragic,” says Red River Mayor Linda Calhoun. “It’s the first time we’ve ever had anything like this.”

(More New Mexico stories.)

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