Matthew Clendennen, one of about 170 people arrested as the deadly May 17th shooting incident outside the Waco Twin Peaks restaurant, filed federal civil rights lawsuit on Friday against the City of Waco, the McLennan County Sheriff’s Office, and individual police officers.
The suit claims that Clendennen’s 4th and 14th Amendment rights were violated by Waco’s alleged policy decision to indict and hold people with “fill in the name” criminal complaints and seize their property.
The suit describes Matthew Clendennen as a recreational motorcyclist, a Baylor University graduate, former fireman, small business owner, husband and father. It also says he has no criminal and is part of the Scimitars motorcycle club, The Scimitars have shown support for the Cossacks MC the past, but the lawsuit states Matthew Clendennen is not part of the Cossacks.
The lawsuit states that Clendennen “did not engage in any criminal activity while at Twin Peaks on that day nor did he travel to Twin Peaks on that day with the intent to engage in any criminal activity nor did he anticipate that any criminal activity would take place.”
The lawsuit also spells out the alleged method that authorities in Waco used to charge those arrested.
It was the policy of the City of Waco, as decided and approved by their policymakers, to cause the arrest and detention of numerous individuals belonging to motorcycle clubs who were in or around the Twin Peaks restaurant at the time of the incident, regardless of whether or not there was individualized probable cause to arrest and detain a particular individual and to do so based on “fill in the name” complaints without individualized facts. This policy was carried out repeatedly, and as a result, over 170 people were arrested and detained, with each one of those persons given the identical $1 million bond, with no regard to their individual situation.
The individual situation described in the lawsuit claims that “Clendennen was on the patio area of Twin Peaks on that day when violence began among other individuals in or around the Twin Peaks parking lot” and that at “the time the violence erupted, Plaintiff Matthew Alan Clendennen took cover by attempting to hide in a hallway inside Twin Peaks.”
The lawsuit specifies no specific damages. It comes on the heels of Breitbart Texas reporting on calls for protest on behalf the “Waco 170” and a motion by an Austin attorney that a judge recuse himself after imposing a $1,000,000 bail on each of those arrested.
The entire Clendennen lawsuit can be read below.