Judge orders mistrial in first Twin Peaks trial

Story by Julia Vergara | Staff Writer, Video by Christina Soto | Broadcast Reporter

A mistrial was declared Friday in the first Twin Peaks trial Friday for Jacob Carrizal, the leader of the Dallas Bandidos chapter.

Carrizal had been on trial since Oct. 11 for two counts of organized crime leading to murder and assault in addition to an unorganized crime of directing activities of a gang.

After 14 hours of deliberation, the jury was unable to come to a unanimous decision— leading 54th State District Judge Matt Johnson to order a mistrial.

Thursday night, the jury had been sequestered because after nine hours of deliberation, they were unable to come to a decision.

That same night, the jury also revealed that one of the jurors was holding up the trial due to having previous experience with the Cossacks—the other biker gang involved in the Twin Peaks shooting.

As of Monday, it is unknown when Carrizal will be retried.

District Attorney Abelino Reyna said that despite being disappointed by the ruling, he is not giving up.

“We knew going into this case that it was going to be a big fight,” Reyna said. “We knew it was going to be a battle and you know, I still know that in each and every one of these cases and I’m not going to give up.”

On the other side, Defense Attorney Casie Gotro said Friday was a victory.

“There wasn’t enough evidence that the Dallas chapter and specifically Jacob Carrizal had committed any violence against any person that wasn’t self-defense,” Gotro said.

It has been about 2 ½ years since the turf war between the Bandidos and the Cossacks resulted in the death of nine people on May 17, 2015.

Sgt. Patrick Swanton of the Waco Police Department told the Waco Tribune-Herald that the biker gang shooting likely started in Twin Peaks’ restroom, spilled into the bar and then into the parking lot. He also told them that day, the two gangs were doing recruiting in the area and Twin Peaks was already a known location for that kind of activity.

Waco Police Department officers had been staged at Central Texas Marketplace less than five minutes away from Twin Peaks in order to intervene if a fight did occur.

According to a Waco Police Department press release, they became aware of the rising tension between the Bandidos and Cossacks in mid-March. It was reported that the increased tension was the result of the Cossacks wearing a “Texas rocker patch” on their vests.

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