, Newburyport, MA

March 15, 2013

Two gang suspects still at large

Police seek more men for Red Devils beating in Byfield

By Dave Rogers
Staff Writer

---- — BYFIELD — Two additional suspects, charged with kidnapping, mayhem and extortion related to the brutal beating of a disgraced Red Devils Motorcycle Club member in October, remain at large, almost 48 hours after four other bikers were arrested on the same charges.

A state police official yesterday said the agency was not releasing the names of the suspects and that no further information on the two men was available.

Lynn residents Sean R. Burr, 48, of 19 Fayette St., and Marc T. Eliason, 35, of 74 Robinson St., together with Brian T. Weymouth, 40, of 20 Jacobs Ave., Danvers; and Nicholas Avelis, 54, of 44 Grapevine Road, Gloucester, were indicted yesterday at Salem Superior Court on kidnapping, mayhem and extortion by threat of injury charges following their arraignment at Newburyport District Court.

Evidence indicates that Barr and Eliason are members of the Hells Angels Motorcycle Club while Avelis and Weymouth are affiliated with the Red Devils. State police called the relationship between the two gangs “friendly.”

Police believe the four suspects were directly involved with the maiming of a Revere man at the Red Devils club in Byfield in mid-October. According to police, Barr smashed the victim’s hand with a ball peen hammer, a heavy metalworking hammer used by gang members to inflict serious injury. The victim was attacked after word began circulating that he had begun talking with members of the rival Outlaws Motorcycle Club with the intention of joining them.

The victim had once been a member of the Red Devils but had been “put out bad” by other members for allegedly not roughing up a disgraced Hells Angels member who attended a Red Devils party back in September. Per gang protocol, members are required to beat up those “put out bad” or kicked out by their clubs should they attend club parties or events.

Among the locations raided yesterday morning were a Hells Angels clubhouse in Lynn and a Red Devils clubhouse in Byfield. Evidence by state police crime scene services was collected at certain locations.

Warrants for their arrest, and the arrest of the two other suspects, were issued as a result of a lengthy investigation conducted by the North Shore Gang Task Force, which includes state and local police and federal law enforcement agents. Assisting the gang task force were members of the FBI, the State Police Gang Unit, state police crime scene and ballistics technicians, state police chemists, state police Troop A uniformed patrols and local police from Danvers, Lynn, Byfield, Gloucester and other North Shore communities.

Essex County District Attorney’s Office spokewoman Carrie Kimball-Monahan declined to comment yesterday when asked about the investigation, saying her office doesn’t discuss pending cases.

During the arrest of Avelis at his Gloucester home, police secured several firearms. Avelis has an active license to carry, which will be reviewed by Gloucester police in light of his arrest. As a result of the initial arrests, police developed additional information leading them to obtain additional search warrants for locations in Danvers and Lynn. The search in Danvers of an address connected to Eliason led to the discovery of a large amount of ammunition and various pills, according to the state police.

The Red Devils Motorcycle Club has had a location in Byfield for at least two years, when it opened up inside a Byfield strip mall located near Interstate 95 around fall 2010. The plaza, at 2 Fruit St., is home to the Parker River Pub and Grill, the Byfield Water District, a general store, Pearson’s Family Hardware and other small businesses.

The plaza is owned by Ronald and Edna Pearson. Attempts to reach the couple yesterday were unsuccessful as a receptionist at Pearson Inc., located inside the strip mall that bears their name, said both owners were on job sites all day.

The morning after the raid, women inside Sadie’s For Hair, located next door to the club, were discussing the incident. People there said club members are rarely seen as they hold meetings after the hair salon is closed for the day.

But when their paths have crossed, those at the salon said club members have been perfect neighbors, with one person saying the Red Devils changed the night of their weekly meetings so it wouldn’t conflict with the one night a week the salon remains open late.

Since the Red Devils opened their clubhouse, there have been no police calls there, according to Newbury police Chief Michael Reilly.