Man arrested, charged in shooting at nightclub

Rivalry between 2 gangs to blame, police say

February 07, 2004|By Laura Barnhardt | Laura Barnhardt,SUN STAFF

A prospective member of Hells Angels has been charged in the shooting last month of two rival motorcycle gang members at an Edgemere nightclub, Baltimore County police said yesterday.

Wallace Schnople, 45, of the 2800 block of Pulaski Highway was being held without bail at the county detention center last night, charged with two counts of attempted murder, two counts of first-degree assault and weapons violations in the shooting, police said.

The victims - Charles Zepp, 23, of Eldersburg, and Timothy McDowell, 38, of Frederick - were identified as members of the Pagans gang, according to police. They have both been released from the hospital.

Officers identified Schnople and another suspect, Michael James Moore, 42, of Essex, as prospective members of Hells Angels.

Detectives say they believe the rivalry between the Pagans and Hells Angels, who recently have begun appearing in Maryland, was the motive for the shooting Jan. 4 at Club Tattle Tails in the 2100 block of Sparrows Point Road.

Maryland has long been territory for the Pagans - founded in Prince George's County - and conflicts between the two motorcycle gangs have been intensifying in recent years, police said.

Schnople, who is known as "Bear," was arrested Tuesday by an officer with the Maryland State Police warrant task force for a charge of driving with a suspended license in Frederick, police said. Troopers then realized he also was wanted in Baltimore County in connection with the shooting.

Schnople, who has been arrested more than a half-dozen times on assault and battery charges, finished serving two years of supervised probation for an assault conviction in 2000, court records show. He received probation before judgment in a 1991 battery and a 1985 harassment charge, according to the records.

Police also have charged Moore - believed to be the shooter in the Edgemere incident - with attempted murder, assault and weapons violations. He had not been arrested as of yesterday, police said.

Sun researcher Jean Packard contributed to this article.

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