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Suspect in Henderson biker gang shooting files petition to lower bail

One of three men arrested in connection with a shooting between members of the rival Hells Angels and the Vagos Motorcycle Club filed a petition Friday to be granted a lower bail.

A Henderson Police Department arrest report described 66-year-old Richard Devries as the president of the Las Vegas chapter of the Hells Angels. On Thursday, Justice of the Peace David Gibson Sr. set bail at $380,000 for Devries and two co-defendants, who officials said were Hells Angels prospects.

Devries’ defense attorney Richard Schonfeld, had initially asked for a bail of $50,000. Schonfeld argued Thursday that a higher bail was not necessary because Devries has a stable employment history, has lived in Las Vegas for 19 years, has no prior criminal history, and is an honorably discharged military veteran.

“It is respectfully submitted that the Justice Court’s bail setting of $380,000 is an amount that is excessive and tantamount to no bail, which is a violation of both the Nevada Constitution and the United States Constitution,” Schonfeld wrote in the petition filed Friday in District Court.

Schonfeld also argued Thursday that members of other motorcycle clubs had been granted lower bails in other high-profile cases involving the groups.

Gibson said Thursday that a high bail was appropriate in the case to prevent further violence.

“I can’t predict the future, but I can kind of control it,” he said.

Devries and the co-defendants — Russell Smith, 26, Stephen Alo, 46 — have been charged with conspiracy to commit murder, six counts of attempted murder with a deadly weapon, six counts of battery with a deadly weapon and six counts of discharging a gun at or into an occupied structure, court records show.

Schonfeld wrote in the petition that official reports do not identify Devries “as having possessed a weapon, fired a weapon, or engaged in any of the conduct charged.”

The conflict between the Hells Angels and Vagos members began early Sunday, as members of the Hells Angels group were seen “riding around” the Vagos members, who were preparing for the “Flags over Damn” ride near the Hoover Dam, according to an arrest report.

The same Hells Angels then “began to cause problems” with the Vagos group at the Southern Nevada Veterans Memorial Cemetery in Boulder City, the report said.

Later that day, Hells Angels riders pulled up next to a group of Vagos members who were riding north on U.S. Highway 95 near Wagon Wheel Drive. According to the report, some of the Hells Angels riders tried to kick a Vagos rider over, and one Hells Angels member “stood up on their motorcycle and started shooting.”

Six Vagos riders were injured, along with a member of the Hells Angels, prosecutors said.

Chief Deputy District Attorney Danielle “Pieper” Chio said Thursday that the shooting may have been in retaliation for an April shooting in San Bernardino, California, in which a Hells Angels member was killed.

Contact Katelyn Newberg at knewberg@reviewjournal.com or 702-383-0240. Follow @k_newberg on Twitter.

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