Motorcycle gang implicated in Manassas mob assault

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A Warrenton man was recently charged with participating in criminal gang activity after allegedly beating a man held down by fellow members of the Street Nightmares Motor Cycle Club, court records say.

Matthew Aaron Culton, 33, was arrested March 8 for an incident that took place in a Manassas bar in January. According to an affidavit filed in Fauquier Circuit Court by a Manassas City Police Department detective, Culton is alleged to be a member of a criminal motorcycle gang. However, the Street Nightmares group advertises itself online as a community service organization.

In the affidavit, a law-enforcement official writes that the Street Nightmares are affiliated with the Pagans Motorcycle Club.

“The Pagans MC is an ongoing criminal organization with extensive membership and support clubs throughout the Commonwealth,” the affidavit reads. “Members of Street Nightmares MC and Pagans MC have been involved in different crimes to include but not limited to: homicides, assaults, auto thefts, larcenies, entering vehicles and destruction of property in the Northern Virginia Area.”

The national president of the Pagans, David Keith “Bart” Barbeito, of Myersville, Md., was indicted in October 2009 in West Virginia for plotting to kill and extort rivals. He pleaded guilty to four related charges in December 2010. More than 50 other members of the gang were also indicted as part of a multi-state sweep.

According to a Facebook page called “Street Nightmares MC,” the group is made up of Harley Davidson enthusiasts who help support local businesses and raise money to donate to charities. The Pagans Motorcycle Club, according to its website, arranges concerts, parties, motorcycle rallies and conventions.

In January, two men told police they were drinking at Mackey’s American Pub in Manassas, when Culton, unprovoked, allegedly began yelling homophobic slurs at them for several hours. A physical altercation allegedly ensued inside the bar and continued outside, court records say.

Culton allegedly waited in the parking lot for the men and pulled out a butterfly knife, threatening them, according to his arrest warrant. One man fled and the other was allegedly surrounded by six or seven members of the Street Nightmares who put him in a choke hold and held his arms behind his back, court documents say, then Culton allegedly punched him in the face and body several times.

Culton denied he or any members of the Street Nightmares did anything wrong, court records say. He alleged he was the victim of the incident, telling police if he or other members of his motorcycle club did assault anyone, it would only be in self-defense.

Culton is charged with two counts of gang participation in a criminal act, simple mob assault or battery and misdemeanor assault. He was released on bond and is scheduled to appear in Prince William General District Court on June 6.

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