Last month, as we reported, the Denver District Attorney's Office announced that it would not be filing any charges in the January brawl during the Colorado Motorcycle Expo at the National Western complex even though one person was killed and a number of others were injured.
Now, as if to prove that the DA's office didn't make this decision lightly, authorities have released a 195-page report (see it below) outlining the investigation in extraordinarily minute detail.
Despite all of this documentation, the inquiry was clearly hobbled by a lack of cooperation from the Mongols, one of the two motorcycle clubs involved in the chaos — and the MC with which the dead man, Victor Mendoza, was affiliated.
As such, the first-person accounts tend to be from the perspective of the Iron Order, the other MC that took part — and the group that counted Derrick Duran, the man who fatally shot Mendoza, as a member.
Duran was a Colorado Department of Corrections employee — no surprise given that the Iron Order tends to attract members with police or military backgrounds.
The report quotes an Aurora detective as saying he eyeballed numerous Iron Order patch-wearers at the Expo who were in law enforcement, including one person from his own department, two deputies with Adams Count, a Denver Mint employee, an ICE agent and a prison guard.
So sprawling is the document that it essentially includes a cast of characters. Here's a list of seventeen Iron Order members and their nicknames:
Kong — Derrick DURAN
Royce — Kurt CRIM
Loop Guru or Loup Garu — Michael GREER
Prospect Aaron or A1 — Aaron GREGORY
Hang around Kyle — Kyle HAUBERT
Prospect Nick — Nicholas HENNING
Cactus Jack — Mathew JAMES
Random — John JOHNSTON
Penguin — Daniel McCALLISTER
Prospect Duce or Aaron 2 — Aaron MERCER
Oak — Landyn PLATT
Sunny D — Robert SEAY
Snydy or Schnydy — BRIAN SNYDER
Prospect Caleb — Caleb STEWART
Putz — Michael THOMPSON
Woops — Johnny WINSTON
Worf — Matthew WOELFLE
According to an audio interview with Mercer, aka Duce/Aaron 2, the problems started at around 11:45 a.m. on January 30 with what was in essence a territorial beef. He says a group of about ten Mongols approached four Iron Order members looking at parts for sale and told them "to get up the stairs."
In response, Snydy — Brian Snyder — supposedly said "they would go in a minute," as soon as the rest of the MC arrived; the Iron Order attendees had separated into three groups upon entering the event. But Mercer says the Mongols reacted by surrounding the Iron Order quartet and knocking a beer from the hand of Woops — Johnny Winston.
Next, Mercer continued, he heard someone say, "Fuck him up," at which point the Mongols went after Winston, and the battle began in earnest.
As for Duran, nicknamed Kong, he says "the Mongols asked what the fuck he was doing there and told him to get the fuck up the stairs," but when he and his fellow members attempted to do so, "the Mongols started physically striking them with closed fists and dragging them to the ground."
Amid the confusion, Duran told investigators, he pulled out a .380 Glock "and brandished it, telling everybody to get back and leave them alone," and when they didn't, he squeezed off a shot.
That bullet didn't hit anyone, he maintained, but one fired by a reactive Mendoza did, grazing Duran's torso. Then, "before the other guy could get a second shot off," Duran drilled him in the chest, setting off an even greater cascade of violence.
Along the way, Mercer was roughed up, Woelfle (Worf) was stabbed and McCallister (Penguin) was shot, as was a Mongol, Jared Chadwick, who declined to press charges or say anything about the incident to Denver cops.
Had Chadwick spoken, his version of events would no doubt have been very different from that presented by the Iron Order. Note that in February, an attorney for the Mongols publicly accused the Iron Order of murder.
But instead of a point-counterpoint, the report is necessarily one-sided, albeit filled with colorful dialogue; one Iron Order member claims to have heard a Mongol say, "You cocksucker, I'm gonna fucking kill you."
Look below to see raw video courtesy of 7News, followed by the report in its entirety.