SEMINOLE COUNTY, Fla. - Attorneys on Tuesday gave opening statements in the trial of a man accused of killing three rival motorcycle club members at a Seminole County charity event.
David Maloney is accused in the deadly 2012 shootout at the Veterans of Foreign Wars post in Winter Springs.
ambushed rival gang members, prosecutors said, describing a horrific scene where people were running and ducking for cover while bullets were flying.
But Maloney's defense attorney said his client was the one who had been fearful for his life.
Prosecutors said the three Florida Warlocks MC members who were killed didn't stand a chance because they didn't have guns when Maloney's Philadelphia Warlocks ambushed them.
"Shoot first and ask questions later," said prosecutor Lisa Haba. "That is exactly what happened Sept. 30, 2012, and as a result, three men are now dead."
Maloney's defense attorney, Michael Lafay, said his client was kicked out of the Florida Warlocks around 2010, so he started his own biker gang called the Philadelphia Warlocks.
Lafay said his client was being threatened and was even shot at in the months leading up to the deadly shootout, which is why he was wearing a bulletproof vest and armed with an arsenal of guns.
When he refused to leave Seminole County, he was warned it would cause trouble, Lafay said.
"The violence continued," said Lafay. "It escalates around Mr. Maloney, and he becomes more and more fearful."
On Tuesday, one of the Florida Warlocks testified someone fraudulently used his phone in a text that instructed his fellow gang members to show up at the Philly Warlocks' poker run at the VFW.
"Do you have any explanation as to how other Warlocks would have received such an order on your
telephone?" asked Lafay.
"Someone had sent a text using my name, figuring using my name would give them a fear factor," said Florida Warlock John Boudreau. "I don't know. I didn't send a text."
The trial is scheduled to continue Wednesday.
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