3 Young Black Men Almost Lynched by Racist Westside Biker Gang

Photo: K.C. Alfred/The San Diego Union-Tribune (AP)
Photo: K.C. Alfred/The San Diego Union-Tribune (AP)

In a KKK-style attack, seventeen outlaws from the biker gang Hell’s Angels chased down and viciously attacked three Black men back in June. Now, three months later, a grand jury has indicted the gang on criminal and hate crime charges.

San Diego County District Attorney Summer Stephan said on June 6, a 19-year-old, 20-year-old and 21-year-old Black man were on Newport Avenue when they were targeted. Allegedly, one of the men had spoken to a biker’s girlfriend and seemingly out of the blue, the three were being chased by Hell’s Angels and their buddies. While running, they were called racial slurs and told they “didn’t belong in the neighborhood,” the DA said.

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Most of the shared phrases pledge a member’s loyalty to the group or to other members. For example, OMGs, racist skinhead groups and racist prison gangs alike often use the phrase “X Forever, Forever X”, where “X” is the name of the group. Members of the Hammerskins racist skinhead gang often use the phrase “Hammerskin Forever, Forever Hammerskin,” while members of the outlaw biker club Hell’s Angels use “Angels Forever, Forever Angels.” Often these phrases are turned into acronyms, such as OFFO for “Outlaws Forever, Forever Outlaws,” or CFFC for “[Aryan] Circle Forever, Forever [Aryan] Circle.”

OMGs and white supremacists also share a love for alphanumerically coded phrases. For example, one common white supremacist symbol is the number 88, which stands for “Heil Hitler” (because “H” is the 8th letter of the alphabet, so 88 is equivalent to “Heil Hitler”). Hell’s Angels members will similarly refer to their club by the number 81 (alphanumeric code for Hell’s Angels). One member of the White Knights of America, a racist prison 7 and street gang in Arizona and Texas, displayed the numbers 23 and 11 on the rear fender of his motorcycle (an alphanumeric representation of “W” and “K”).

The 17 defendants were arrested on Sept. 21 and face charges of assault likely to cause bodily injury with gang enhancements as well as hate crime enhancements. Upon their arrest, authorities seized 42 illegal firearms and drugs. If sentenced, they face anywhere from three years to life in prison.

“In San Diego County, we cannot, and will not tolerate violence and racism of any nature, much less crimes like this hateful, vicious, and unprovoked attack. It is a testament to the cooperation and coordination of our law enforcement partners, working closely with our Gangs Division, that these defendants were identified and are being brought to face justice,” said DA Stephan.

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