There were blatantly punitive raids on two motorcycle club clubhouses in Boise last week. The victims were members of the Brother Speed Motorcycle Club and the Road Brothers Motorcycle Club. The house of the guy the police were actually looking for, a man named Timothy Alan Butterbaugh, was also raided and Butterbaugh was charged with distribution of methamphetamine.
Responsibility for the raids is credited to something called the “Treasure Valley Metro Violent Crimes Task Force.” This clumsily named creation is one of the new police forces intended to federalize local law enforcement. The Treasure Valley police bureaucracy combines the malice and resources of the Federal Bureau of Investigation; the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives; Ada County Sheriff’s Office; Canyon County Sheriff’s Office; Idaho Department of Correction; and the Boise, Caldwell, Nampa and Meridian, Idaho Police Departments.
Apparently, the federal complaint against Butterbaugh was all the excuse the Task Force needed to raid the two clubhouses. According to police, an informant convinced Butterbaugh to sell him 3.5 grams of methamphetamine at Butterbaugh’s house on July 24 after a four month long undercover investigation. This drug deal was sufficiently important in Boise for the local U.S. Attorney, Wendy J. Olson, to issue a press release.
According to that release, “If convicted, Butterbaugh faces a maximum penalty of twenty years in prison, a maximum fine of $1,000,000, and at least three years of supervised release.”
Butterbaugh had his initial appearance in court last Friday.
The clubhouses were raided and vandalized during the service of two search warrants. Those warrants remain sealed.
Witnesses told Boise television station KTVB that flash bang grenades were used, windows and doors were broken and that police piled out of a U-haul trailer and started “throwing people to the ground.” Police then detained several bikers at each clubhouse before confiscating their cuts.
U.S. Attorney Olson explained the raids on the clubhouses to KTVB with the words, “The Treasure Valley Metro Violent Crime Task Force is in the business of investigating major drug and gang activity.”