The Texas Court of Criminal Appeals has thrown out a gag order that prohibited bikers charged in a deadly May 2015 shootout from talking to the media. The court issued an order June 15 that lifted a stay that had been in place since August, when the court ruled that the gag order was wrong but allowed it to stay in place pending further consideration.
The challenge to the gag order was supported by a number of media companies, press and open government organizations, including the Texas Press Association, the Freedom of Information Foundation of Texas, the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press, the Texas Criminal Defense Lawyers Association, The Associated Press and the Hearst Corp.
Nine people were killed and about two dozen wounded in the gun battle with police and bikers that officials say began as a turf war between the Bandidos and Cossacks motorcycle clubs. Nearly 200 people were charged with conspiring to engage in organized crime.