A war between three rival biker gangs erupted in Texas on Sunday in the parking lot of a restaurant, leaving nine people dead and emergency services rushing 18 others to the hospital with serious injuries.
According to police, no bystanders were injured, but the incident itself wasn’t a surprise, KWTX-TV News reports.
Police in Waco had their eyes on the Twin Peaks Sports Bar and Grill for some time because of gang activity, and so as soon as violence broke out at 12:15 p.m., police were already at the scene and fired several shots that hit gang members.
The fight first started with fists and chains and rapidly moved to knives and guns, with police recovering as many as 100 weapons.
At a briefing shortly after the shooting, Waco Police Sgt. Patrick Swanton lashed out at restaurant management, saying they not only knew about the biker gangs, but welcomed their business with open arms. Despite the best efforts of police to obtain cooperation from the restaurant in cracking down on illegal activities, “They have been of no assistance,” Swanton added.
“Management knew that there were issues, and we were here, but they continued to let those groups of people into their business,” Swanton told the Waco Tribune.
Police are actively arresting biker gang members because of the possibility of retaliation, and have closed down Central Texas Marketplace, a busy area along Interstate 35, while conducting a full investigation. The parking lot was still strewn with bodies hours later.
It is still unknown what set off the violence.
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