Ex-Hells Angels president sentenced in 2008 Las Vegas chapel melee

The former president of the Hells Angels motorcycle club’s local chapter was sentenced on Tuesday to two to five years in prison for assaulting rival gang members at a downtown wedding chapel in 2008.

Surveillance footage showed Charles “Peewee” Goldsmith leading the way, fists first, as he and 12 others swarmed Mongols who were attending a wedding at A Special Memory Wedding Chapel on Fourth Street and Gass Avenue on Dec. 20, 2008.

Goldsmith pleaded guilty in October to battery with substantial bodily harm with the intent to promote, further or assist the activities of a criminal gang and coercion.

Goldsmith’s son, Brad Goldsmith, was also sentenced on Tuesday to 16 months to four years in prison for his role in the melee.

Charles Goldsmith was kicked out of the Hells Angels after making a statement to Las Vegas police.

Both men were taken into custody after Judge Michael Villani handed down the sentence.

In all, 13 men were charged with bludgeoning three Mongols and three others during the melee. As the Hells Angels were leaving a wedding ceremony of their own, they saw three Mongols at the chapel for another wedding.

The 13 men attacked the Mongols, bludgeoning them with their fists, feet, bottles and trash cans.

Prosecutors called it an unprovoked attack.

Defense lawyers had said their clients were acting in self-defense because Mongols had months earlier attacked and killed a Hells Angel in San Francisco.

Three defendants, Joseph Gennuso, James Sexey and John Merchant, have pleaded not guilty and are awaiting trial.

And one of the defendants, John Dawson, has died. He had pleaded guilty to battery charges prior to his death.

The others have pleaded guilty. Some have been sentenced to prison, others to probation.

This is a developing story. Check back for updates.

Contact reporter Francis McCabe at fmccabe@review journal.com or 702-380-1039.