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Sunday, 10 August 2008

Loud American Roadhouse scene of a confrontation between members of the Hells Angels and the Iron Pigs,motorcycle club

23:55 |

off-duty Seattle police officer was detained Saturday after shooting a member of the Hells Angels motorcycle club during a bar brawl at the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally in South Dakota, police said.The officer, who was not identified, was involved in an early-morning fracas Saturday at the Loud American Roadhouse, according to a statement from Sturgis police.The confrontation erupted about 1 a.m. between members of the Hells Angels and the Iron Pigs, a motorcycle club made up of police and firefighters. There were about 500 people in the bar at the time and a rock band was playing, according to the Rapid City Journal.Two gunshots were fired, and the shooter was identified by Sturgis police as a law-enforcement officer.There was no word on the condition of the victim, who was hospitalized.The Seattle Police Department was notified Saturday morning, according to a statement issued in the evening by Seattle police spokesman Sean Whitcomb.The statement said that four other Seattle officers were also present when the Sturgis shooting occurred.Whitcomb declined to name the officers.All five officers involved were placed on administrative reassignment and relieved of duty pending the investigation by South Dakota authorities, Whitcomb said.Sturgis Police Chief Jim Bush told the Rapid City Journal that police detained and questioned numerous people at the scene but that no arrests had been made and nobody was in custody."We're still trying to ascertain for sure who did the shooting," Bush told the newspaper. "We have suspects. We have a lot of information to put together."Seattle Police Chief Gil Kerlikowske has dispatched a team of homicide and internal-affairs investigators to Sturgis to gather information, Whitcomb said.

"The Seattle Police Department considers this a matter of utmost seriousness," the Seattle police statement said.

Sturgis police said in their statement they will investigate the shooting, aided by federal, state and county law enforcement, and the results will be presented to an investigative grand jury.

The famous Sturgis rally draws hundreds of thousands of motorcycle riders to the small South Dakota town every summer. This year's rally ends today.

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