There has been an arrest in the murders of Kingsmen Motorcycle Club members Paul Maue and Daniel “DJ” Szymanski in the early morning hours of September 6 outside the Kingsmen’s North Tonawanda chapter clubhouse.
Lou Michel of the Buffalo News is reporting that the suspect is a “Kingsmen Motorcycle Club member from Florida.” Citing police sources, Michel said “The motive for the shooting might be as simple as local Kingsmen refusing to let him enter their Oliver Street clubhouse in North Tonawanda.” The police broke the case with the help of an informant.
The unnamed suspect was arrested in Georgia on an unrelated charge and will be extradited to New York to be arraigned. The police sources told Michel “the killer fled with another Kingsman who is believed to be a New York state resident.”
Steve Cook, a Kansas policeman who describes himself as “the foremost authority on Outlaw Motorcycle Gangs,” has speculated that the murders of Maue and Szymanski were related to an internal dispute within the Kingsmen and that dispute is related to a patch over to another motorcycle club.
Last month the News reported that unnamed sources, “believe the murders may be linked to ongoing disputes within the biker community. Those disputes include efforts by other biker clubs to recruit members to leave the Kingsmen and join other biker clubs.”
The September murders culminated a series of violent events that suggest a power struggle within the club. On August 31, 2013 the Kingsmen’s Lockport clubhouse was damaged, a man sleeping inside was beaten with baseball bats and a motorcycle, several firearms, ammunition, beer, liquor and a cell phone were stolen. In early August, Szymanski told a friend, “We had some problems down in Jamestown. Another club was trying to take over our Jamestown clubhouse.” And, on August 24, an unnamed Kingsmen was attacked near the Niagara Falls Clubhouse and stripped of his colors. The man also reported that five rifles, a shotgun and two black powder rifles had been stolen from the clubhouse.
Szymanski and Maue were shot in the back of the head after attending a party at the clubhouse. A witness said the shooting was preceded by “extremely loud arguing.” The same witness reported seeing “a bunch of people” running from the scene. Maue was a former president of the Buffalo chapter of the Kingsmen. Police have openly complained that nobody at the party that night knew anything.
After the murders, North Tonawanda Police Chief William R. Hall said, “There was a group of people there that night. It happened right outside their clubhouse. Obviously, someone saw what happened, but people are telling us they didn’t see a thing.”
Two weeks after the shooting, with the aid of an informant, a multi agency task force that included members of the Erie County Sheriff’s Office, New York State Police, Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, found the semiautomatic pistol used in the murders in a remote location near Route 219 south of Buffalo.