Details of the fight that killed Hells Angels Frisco charter President Mark “Papa” Guardado on September 2, 2008 have finally been entered into the public record. Guardado died in the street outside a bar called Dirty Thieves at the corner of 24th Street and Treat Avenue in San Francisco at the hands of Christopher Ablett, a member of the Modesto chapter of the Mongols Motorcycle Club.
This account of that fight may offend some readers. Those details are based on public statements made by Ablett in testimony at his trial for racketeering and murder. That testimony is supplemented by additional testimony and other statements made by witnesses and other informed sources.
As is usually the case, the altercation lasted less than a minute.
The Calm Before The Storm
That night Ablett was enjoying the company of two women named Amie Marvel and Joyce Yu. The women had suggested that the three of them go to the Dirty Thieves which is about a mile from the Frisco Angels clubhouse. Ablett left his Mongols cut at Marvel’s apartment but he was wearing a set of Virginia Mongols soft colors under a black leather jacket.
Ablett rode his three-year-old Electra Glide to the bar. The women were in a Toyota pickup truck. Ablett took off his jacket when they entered the bar. The trio spent the evening drinking moderately and playing pool.
Ablett went outside multiple times to smoke Marlboros and check on his bike which was parked about 100 feet away. Cigarette butts with Ablett’s DNA on them and the empty cigarette packet with Ablett’s fingerprints were later recovered by police.
While Ablett smoked in his Mongols tee-shirt he was observed by a motorcycle mechanic and friend of the Hells Angels named George Jimenez. When Ablett and the women left the bar, Jimenez saw Ablett drop his bike after a near collision with the back of Marvel’s truck.
The Electra Glide was equipped with an electronic fuel injection and a tip over sensor that shut off the fuel when the bike leaned more than 45 degrees. Harley-Davidson calls the device a Base Angle Sensor or BAS.
Jimenez helped Ablett lift the bike which then would not start until the BAS was reset. All Ablett had to do to reset the sensor was turn the ignition off then on again. Instead he turned off the ignition and waited.
He sweet talked Marvel for at least ten minutes while Yu remained in the truck. While Ablett flirted, Jimenez called another friend of the San Francisco Angels named Samuel Thunder Sun Watso. Watso has testified that he called Mark Guardado at the Angels clubhouse and told him “There are Mongols down on Treat.”
Guardado approached Ablett on foot after both women were back in Marvel’s truck. A confrontation quickly ensued. Marvel got out of the truck and ordered both men to “Stop it.” An unidentified witness told Marvel to “Get the fuck out of here.”
According to Ablett, Guardado, who was about two inches shorter and 80 pounds heavier than the Mongol, attacked him. Three men in a green Sport Utility Vehicle observed the fight from a distance. One of the men in the truck, according to multiple witnesses, weighed about 300 pounds and had full tattoo sleeves on both arms.
As Guardado wrestled Ablett to the ground, Ablett produced a knife and stabbed Guardado in the forearm, upper arm and back. At the same time, according to Ablett, he observed a second man running toward them from less than a block away. As Ablett struggled to his feet he stabbed Guardado a fourth time in Guardado’s left armpit. It was a potentially life threatening wound but Guardado probably would have survived it if he hadn’t been shot.
As the second assailant arrived, according to Ablett, Guardado called out to him “He keeps sticking me.” In his testimony, Ablett said the second assailant raised his shirt, and Ablett feared that man was about to pull a gun concealed in the small of his back. Ablett then drew a .357 magnum revolver from inside his jacket. As Ablett drew, just after the second assailant arrived, the green SUV pulled up to the scene. The men inside were cursing and shouting.
Ablett fired five shots panning from left to right and back again. He fired the first shot in Guardado’s chest and Guardado, who had already been stabbed four times, dropped. The shot was probably fatal but not instantly fatal.
Ablett fired his second shot at the second assailant. The shot may have hit that man in the leg. A witness has described someone at the scene limping away.
Ablett fired the third and fourth shots at the green SUV. At least one of the shots broke glass. Another shot may have broken the windshield. The occupants of the SUV probably fired three shots at Ablett from an unknown gun before they sped off. Ablett testified that there was a gun battle and witnesses have been uncertain about how many shots were fired in all. Some witnesses have said they heard four shots and others have said they heard eight.
Ablett testified that after the SUV drove away he turned back and saw the second assailant was gone. He turned to the prone Guardado and fired again. That would have been the shot that hit Guardado in the back of the head. It would have been instantly fatal.
Ablett started his motorcycle and fled. The two women fled. A witness stood over the body and called 911 at 10:29:25 p.m. A man who knew Guardado is heard sobbing on that call. The first police arrived at 10:31.
Now a jury must decide whether Ablett’s use of a gun was self defense or murder and whether Ablett’s testimony was credible or self-serving.
Ablett was on the witness stand this morning for another two hours before he returned to the defendant’s table.