Sober Requiem

February 14, 2010

All Posts, News

A year ago, about 11 pm on February 17th 2009, two men named John Lindeman and Brad Lutzow died in the parking of lot of a QuikTrip gas station and convenience store near 19th and Peoria Avenues in Phoenix, Arizona.

Lindeman and Lutzow were both members of a clean and sober motorcycle club named the Association of Recovering Motorcyclists (A.R.M.) They died in a brief, sudden, premeditated altercation with members of the Sober Riders Motorcycle Club. The Sober Riders is a well known clean and sober club with numerous chapters in Arizona. The fight escalated from a boxing match to a gunfight in about the same amount of time in has taken you to read this far in this requiem. Lindeman was dead and Lutzow was dying about 30 seconds after that.

Police found Lindeman where he fell, outside the front door of the store. He was declared dead at a nearby hospital. Lutzow was still alive when he was discovered in the passenger seat of a truck left outside St. Luke’s Hospital. Efforts to revive him failed. Both men died of multiple gunshot wounds.

Neither the Sober Riders nor A.R.M. wear a bottom rocker but the fight was still over territory. Arizona is not big enough for both clubs. Arizona, with a population of a mere 6.8 million souls, lacks sufficient numbers of motorcycle riding, recovering drunks and addicts to sustain chapters of both the Sober Riders and A.R.M. There can be only one.


Motorcycle clubs sometimes spontaneously combust in each other’s presence, like white phosphorous and fresh air. Clubs usually avoid public displays of violent hostility through an elaborate system of formal protocol. Two very respectfully regarded clubs in the west now feel disrespected and betrayed by each other, for example. For the most part, both clubs have been discrete. Yet it is essentially the same dispute that erupted into gunfire between the Sober Riders and A.R.M.

For the most part, law enforcement has no idea what these disputes are about or how they might be resolved. For the most part the general public has no clue that such disputes ever occur. By definition, the world of outlaw motorcycle clubs is outside the law and self-policing. Usually there is peace. Sometimes there is not.

Violent encounters between members of motorcycle clubs usually fall into one of two categories. Either they are essentially accidental or they are the result of grand and stupid delusion. The violent encounter between members of the Mongols Motorcycle Club and the Hells Angels Motorcycle Club in the Special Memory Wedding Chapel in Las Vegas in December 2008 was essentially an accident. The incident in June 2008 when five Hells Angels were attacked by eleven “pastors” of the Set Free Soldiers Motorcycle Ministry was the fruit of a grand and stupid delusion. The deaths of Lindeman and Lutzow was the child of grand and stupid delusions by both the Sober Riders and A.R.M.

Who Stupid Killed

Bradley Burritt Lutzow was 45-years-old when he died. He lived in Durand, Illinois where, in addition to A.R.M., he was a member of Alcoholics Anonymous and the Durand United Methodist Church. He earned his living as a machinist. He was a veteran. And he left behind a widow, a daughter, two step-children, both his parents, two brothers, a sister and seven nieces and nephews.

John Curtis (Unterseher) Lindeman was 43 when he died. He lived in Golden Valley, Arizona and he earned his living delivering papers for the Arizona Republic and dealing cards in Laughlin, Nevada. He had a rougher start in life than most people. His parents divorced when he was four and he had been a recovering drug addict since he was 18. And, like many people with a sad past he is widely remembered as having been a kind and caring man. He left behind a widow, two stepdaughters, his parents, his stepfather, his grandfather, an uncle, two brothers and sister.

Both of these men will be remembered for dying bravely. It is tragic that they both died 25 years before their time.

It is a tragedy like a long cold rain that continues to fall on everyone who was in that parking lot that night a year ago and on everyone who knows someone who was there.

Pax melior est quam iustissimum bellum. Pax vobiscum.

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30 Responses to “Sober Requiem”

  1. Jam Says:

    ARM is a disgrace. Do not join a sober club or association. no power. wearing a patch that looks like a 3 piece but really is two. none the less you are wearing a patch that makes you a target. dues paid go to financing retirement and elite riding and traveling around the world. associates act like they matter.

  2. Road King Rider Says:

    Happy 50th Birthday(Spitfire) Brad. Too bad you are no longer around to celebrate with us. RIP

  3. Giorgio Says:

    please could you tell me where is the place of that statue shown in the pic in the upper left?
    That statue with the angel lying down, like crying…
    I can’t find where it is.


  4. Road King Rider Says:

    Mighty Mike,
    Thank you for your honesty. I hope Bear can live with himself knowing he got two very good men killed.

  5. Rebel Says:

    Dear Mighty Mike,

    Email me.


  6. Mighty Mike Says:

    I have never seen any video but would like to. So maybe i can make sense of it all. We never should have been there. It was an assassination in my opinion. Poohbear(Sober Riders) wanted Ripley dead and ordered it to be done. Being a former Marine myself i believe Spitfire died a Hero going after the man with the gun that shot Ripley. They ambushed us at that store. We were out numbered and alot of them had guns drawn. Ripley was shot 6 times in the back and once in the neck. He never stood a chance. He was assassinated! Ripley was a Diplomat and wanted to resolve this beef with SRMC so we could all ride together for recovery. In my opinion Bear instigated this “Take care of Bussiness” attitude that brought us to where we were at just blocks away from their club house. We could have just went home after this meeting but it was his idea to STRIKE BACK as he put it! I am sorry for you and your families loss and i wish i could have prevented it. I was there because i chose to back my brothers play even though i told Ripley that we would be walking into a hornets nest.

  7. Road King Rider Says:

    Mighty Mike,
    I’ve heard Bear’s, and Chaps’ version of the incident and the lies told to my family by GQ (Tim); I’d love to hear your version. My email address is in this post if you’re interested in sharing. I’ve see the store video and watched Ripley die. It was heart breaking. Brad was not in view of the store’s camera so I was unable to see what truly happened to him. I like that you said “was” a member. That whole macho bull shit meeting between ARM and SRMC should never have happened. Tim never should have sent ARM out to AZ to “set things straight”. I hope you can heal. Enjoy your family because life is precious and too short.

  8. Mighty Mike Says:

    I was a member of ARM ch 45/Az. and was also in that parking lot on that dreadful night. There isnt a day that passes that i dont relive my brothers getting gunned down in front of me. Ripley (John) died in my arms as me and two of my club bros tried to keep him alive. The cops took me away covered in his blood. It pains me to think that they died in vain but lets face it, the whole incident was senseless. It could have been me on that slab. I have three children that at the time were 1, 4, and 15. I feel your pain (Road King Rider). I also hope they ROT IN HELL!

  9. Mighty Mike Says:

    I was a member of A.R.M. ch.45/Az. I was also there in that parking lot that dreadful night. There isn’t a day that goes by that i dont think about my brothers being gunned down in front of me. John(Ripley) died in my arms as me and two of my ARM brothers tried to keep him alive. I was covered in his blood. I feel your pain (Road King Rider). I dont know you but i loved my brothers deeply.

  10. Jamie Sell Says:

    I don’t want anything more then pictures of him and get to know my family on his side nothing more or anything less thank u.

  11. Jamie Sell Says:

    I am his son that no one ever knew about. My mother kept me away for so many years, that is why noone knows who I am. I just found out my father was killed in 2009, I don’t find out till 2013. Me and my father bradley lutzow did get to meet for 4 days when I was 15 then never saw each other after. It was neither his fault or mine. I understand people have lives to live. When I found this out I feel to my knees and cryed for so long that day. I was so broken bc I was hoping one day we could reconnect like we did 12yrs ago. I’m sorry for everyones lose that was so close to him. But I am his son he accepted and knew it and never denied me even though dna test were never done. He and I both know he was my father and I was his son. That’s why it killed me when I found all this out. We only met ande hung out for 4 days, but thoughs days brought us closer then 15yrs of knowing him in person if I had the chance. He made a great impression on me when we met. I was very happy to see my real father was a great man. I am will always be proud to be his son. I love u dad ande miss u very much. We will meet again. If anyone reads this plz contact me at [email protected] or by phone 254-459-0110. I would like photos or anything of him and I would love to have some. So his friends or family plz contact me ASAP.

  12. Road King Rider Says:

    Three years since Brad and John were murdered. Still not an ounce of truth has been spoken about their deaths. All those responsible for their deaths are cowards and liers. I’m still open to receiving truthful information about what happened in AZ on 17 Feb 2009. Email me at [email protected]. I will not rest until I have the truth. So those that are responsible…come find me. Like you, I’m not hiding. I cherish the day I can look you in the eye as you take your last breath.

  13. Road King Rider Says:

    Brad and John were murdered 2 years ago today. So far nothing but empty promises from ARM to step up and make this right–bunch of cowards and posers. Phoenix PD faces a stalled murder investigation. Mean while Brad and John’s family still mourn their loss. I still wonder to this day what Brad and John died for. A Cause? A belief they were doing something good for others? All BULLSHIT! For the members of ARM and SRMC that were involved and/or directly responsible for killing Spitfire and Ripley; may you rot in HELL!

  14. Road King Rider Says:

    One correction to your posting. My brother was not alive when he was found in the truck. Members of ARM removed him from the crime scene, drove him almost 10 miles to a hospital, passing by a much closer hospital and left him in that truck. According to the autopsy report Brad died instantly from a single gunshot. I’ve posted my email before and will do it again. As Brad’s brother, if you have any info you think I can use, please email me at [email protected].

  15. ironrider Says:

    Big V, sorry I didn’t see this earlier. No apology needed on your part, you make good points. The feds have used c&s clubs before as a gateway into 1%ers. As I recall, they did it in AZ through 5th Chapter (?-maybe not AZ, but somewhere). That was one of the big reasons for the demise of 5th.

    Since SRMC will patch anyone on a honda who can breath (it’s all about quantity, not quality), I wouldn’t be surprised if sheriff pink underpants and his maricopa mafia have deputies riding with SRMC. It must be pretty boring, especially if they have to hang with pooh bear and listen to his self-centered, long winded bullshit.

    BJ, did you ride with SRMC? Hope you’re doing better now.

  16. BJohn47 Says:

    Say what you want, but it looks like sober riders, or phooh bear just took over another club.
    There are some great photos of Phooh Bear and what looks like the three top the guys running the show on this clubs web site. We always knew you cant keep the bear down.

    Glad im out of this anger stuff. But I do miss ridding around out here with you guys. I ride with Puttin Sober now and am glad of it. B.J.

  17. BigV Says:


    What I said wasn’t clear enough, so I apologize. I actually meant that the Alphabet Agencies would use the Sober Murders as a way to try to infiltrate the overall club scene to prove that one of the big four somehow controls all other clubs including Sober Clubs.

    Even though that isn’t even remotely true, that’s the way they do things.

  18. ironrider Says:

    Big V, I hear you, but don’t forget that the ATF gets funded from congress by its ability to manufacture gang-porn headlines and tv news stories. This requires some kind of criminality. The DD and later the HA have always been surrounded bu hangarounds anxious to “prove themselves” by busting heads or scoring dope or guns or generally showing their asses. These are the “known associates” who are always in the highest numbers of those arrested when the big operations go down.

    SRMC may be infested with 1%-wannabes, and there ain’t a recovering addict or alcoholic in the world who doesn’t have some kind of criminality in his past, but there’s very little high crime. No dope (well, maybe a little, if somebody fucks up their recovery and picks up). The weapons are purchased and carried legally. The bike insurance is all paid up and even the fucking drivers licenses are valid. So where do the feds get the drama for the headlines? One double murder don’t cover it. Especially since it didn’t involve civilians.

    So, bottom line, I just don’t think this is sexy enough for the feds. I could be wrong, and God knows that happens often enough, but I just don’t smell federale rodent infestation.

  19. maybe Says:

    I fully agree with BigV. Its really sad this happend. When I was a member and this all went down it took me a few months and I chose to leave because of my family. I do not condone violance and when I joined this group it was about recovery and brotherhood. soon learned egos to control and it was time to turn in the cut. I will say Brad and John were great brothers and they did not deserve death.I have said that both clubs should be shut down they lost there program (not all of them but alot)I would love to see an arrest and with videos it is hard at night to really make out a face.but Im sure they know who fired the guns and they r probably still in a closet some were. GOD rest Ripley and spitfire L/R

  20. BigV Says:

    I have to say that I think the Fed’s could very much be on the outside of this one waiting to head in.

    Remember that Laughlin and the Dozen Patchover had set off the ATF into the 81 and AZ.

    The Mongols investigation went back to shit that Doc created between him and another group, Laughlin, the whole Slaton MMA riot, an 81 getting stabbed in NorCal, SF 81 Pres murder, all that piled up and gave the ATF their window to jump in.

    I don’t think this Sober Shooting is any different. ATF will use it as a way to fund some UC’s to come in. They’ll try to show some club is the dominant club and that everyone else is a puppet club. And there was murder, there was collusion to keep a sober club out, they’ll find some way to throw out continuing criminal enterprise.

    I think this is/was the start of another UC op by the Feds. The clubs are just going to have be real careful in the next few years, of everyone.

    Now maybe people understand why there were Forasteros chapters that didn’t patch anyone in for over two decades.

    Thanks for the fine work you do, Rebel.

    LLR- BigV in Bama

  21. veggiefairy Says:

    Last night I went to bed thinking about Brad Lutzow and how sad it is that he is gone. This morning I was awaken by the sounds of a neighbor woman screaming. She was twisting and turning in anguish screaming over and over “my son, my son”. She was writhing in pain. Her hair was disheveled and her clothes were twisted. A police officer was there as well as another woman trying to calm her. I could hear them trying to convince her to not see her sons body and to wait for the coroner to finish. This poor woman tried feverishly to call her son on her cell phone. That is when I broke down and cried. I thought of Brad’s mom and how I was glad that she was not looking out her back window watching a another mother in agonizing greif over the loss of a son on the one year anniversary of the death of her very own son.
    I thought of my son. I wanted to call him but he is at work. I can hear his soft warm voice in my head and wonder quietly what it would be like to never hear that voice again and how many years would it take before I would have to struggle to remember his voice.I can’t allow my self to think any further about loosing him because the reality is possible for anyone who has ever loved a child. I can’t hug my son today because he is in Traverse City, Michigan and I am in Rochelle, Illinois. But I still have him and today I am appreciating him to the fullest on this day of all days.
    Today will be bitter sweet for me. Brad is gone as well as my neighbors son. And I will love my son with a fever today. Please, everyone, spend this day with gratitude for the ones you love, those who are with you and those who are departed from us.
    Peace be with you.

  22. ironrider Says:

    A year later and nothing changes. SRMC and ARM continue the (non-physical) battle of hysterical rhetoric. Apparently the cops don’t care about the murders. It just doesn’t seem that hard to arrest and prosecute a couple of people when there’s a video; everyone in AZ and many outside the state know who did it; a witness offered to name names in return for immunity; and simple things like cell phone records would probably explain who knew what when. So why the inaction?

    I used to think the feds had taken over, and they like to move slow and accumulate evidence. But there’s no big political incentive to get the feds involved, and no underlying criminal enterprise a la RICO, and even the feds could have made a case by now (probably as fucked up as all their other cases, but good for a headline or two). Maybe the Phoenix cops don’t give a shit, as in the case of the assassinated boss of the local red & white crew (sniper headshot, also unsolved).

    If I were a family member, I’d be lighting fires under the local DA and going to the newspapers. But I ain’t, so I won’t do anything but allow any remaining respect I had for SRMC and ARM to further erode to the level of a desert rat turd.

  23. GUSTO Says:

    Dawm!! why is the case cold if theres a video??! dousent add up.

    Thanks for the site Brother.

  24. Vacuus Cura Says:

    “To the best of my knowledge, the case is now officially cold.”

    That’s a damned shame. From your description of the video, it sounds like two brave men died at the hands of cowards.

    Vacuus Cura

  25. Ginny Says:

    Quote: {For the most part, law enforcement has no idea what these disputes are about or how they might be resolved. For the most part the general public has no clue that such disputes ever occur. By definition, the world of outlaw motorcycle clubs is outside the law and self-policing. Usually there is peace. Sometimes there is not.}

    I think this summs up why there will never be an arrest in this case or any other like it. The “self-policing” part of this makes me a bit surprised there has not been any follow up violence to the original incident.

  26. Rebel Says:

    Dear Gusto,

    Two guys died. Many people grieved. Even more people got very pissed off. Some of them got really pissed off at me. One unnamed suspect. No arrests. Many rumors about what might have happened to the suspects. Poohbear is no longer President of the Arizona Confederation. The Sober Riders are still there and Poohbear still seems to get his respect. If A.R.M. is still in Arizona they are keeping a very low profile. To the best of my knowledge, the case is now officially cold.


  27. GUSTO Says:

    Rebel its been a years since, what was the outcome??

  28. willienelso3 Says:

    thank-you. I’ve been following this story on your site (reading all the comments etc.) since November, when I first found theagingrebel. you’re doing important work here (I’m referring to all the reporting/writing on this site). I really appreciate that you felt (and continue to feel) that this tragedy should not be ignored and forgotten. I never heard of these two men who died, and barely knew of the 2 clubs, before reading your reports. (the 5th Chapter I remember.) Anyway, I’ll always remember these men, and will continue to pray for their families and for everyone who was involved or impacted by this senseless incident. There is a deep lesson to be learned here for all of us who care to pay attention. thanks again, Rebel.

    with respect and sadness,


  29. DUKE Says:

    As always, very well written Rebel.




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