Gypsy Joker killing ‘a brutal extraction’

Loggers in Clark County found the body of Robert Lee Huggins on July 1, 2015

Robert Huggins, seen in a 2012 photo from the Multnomah County Sheriff's Office, was killed and dumped in a field in Clark County on July 1, 2015
Robert Huggins, seen in a 2012 photo from the Multnomah County Sheriff's Office, was killed and dumped in a field in Clark County on July 1, 2015

PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — The murder of Robert Lee Huggins was a brutal payback. He was kidnapped, his tortured body then dumped like trash in rural Clark County, according to police and prosecutors.

Huggins — often times called “Bagger Bobby” — was well known within the Gypsy Joker motorcycle gang, senior deputy district attorney Glen Banfield said.

4-box-huggins-mugsOn Monday, 3 of the 4 people charged with Huggins’ death — Mark Leroy Dencklau, Tiler Evan Pribbernow and Earl Deverle Fisher — appeared before Multnomah County Circuit Court Judge Gregory F. Silver for a 2-day bail hearing. They are all being held without bail.

The fourth person charged with murder, Malachi Watkins, remains in custody in Washington State. He has yet to be arraigned on the grand jury indictment that charges him with murder.

Information from the bail hearing

During the hearing, the prosecutors called PPB Homicide Detective James Lawrence, the lead detective on the case:

  • Huggins was the former treasurer of the local chapter for the Gypsy Joker motorcycle gang and was also known as the “enforcer” or the Sergeant at Arms.
    He was kicked out of the gang for breaking 2 rules — shooting heroin and stealing. He was reportedly stealing from the gang to feed his drug use.
  • The gang “stripped” Huggins of his patches and took his motorcycle. “They were absolutely done,” Banfield said of Huggins’ ties to the gang being cut.
  • In June 2015, seeking revenge against the gang, Huggins was involved in a kidnapping and robbery in Marion County at Dencklau’s residence, the gang’s regional president. Dencklau’s girlfriend was home at the time and was tied up. She told detectives of a “terrifying” experience
  • “She thought they were going to kill her,” Banfield said.
  • Once the gang discovered Huggins was responsible for the kidnapping, they sought revenge. Word was put out on the street and gang members were out looking for him.
  • Around June 30, 2015, Huggins was at a known drug house near NE 119th and NE Holladay Street in Portland. He was kidnapped and driven across the state line into Washington. He was tortured to death.
  • Huggins body was driven to a rural field in Ridgefield, Washington and dumped.
  • “They might have gotten away with it,” Banfield said.
  • But detectives were able to piece the case together using cell phone records, which showed the suspects traveling north and into the area where Huggins’ was found.
  • Detectives also discovered surveillance video from a residence and a gas station.
    Video reportedly shows two vehicles at the residence in Woodland, Washington where Huggins was reportedly taken and tortured.
  • “It was a brutal extraction from the club,” Banfield said.

His body found

Huggins’ body was found by loggers. Detectives were able to quickly identify him after looking at his tattoos. They didn’t release his name publicly for several weeks because of the ongoing investigation.

Robert Huggins, seen in a 2012 photo from the Multnomah County Sheriff's Office, was killed and dumped in a field in Clark County on July 1, 2015
Robert Huggins, seen in a 2012 photo from the Multnomah County Sheriff’s Office, was killed and dumped in a field in Clark County on July 1, 2015

In addition to Dencklau, Pribbernow and Fisher, 2 other people have been arrested in connection with the case. Ronald Charles Thompson and Kendra Castle are charged with hindering prosecution or tampering with evidence.

Days after the arrests multiple SWAT teams executed 2 search warrants in connection with the homicide.

The warrants were served at a residence at 3536 Northeast Garfield Avenue and an adjoining building at 3535 Northeast Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard — otherwise known as the Gypsy Joker Motorcycle Club clubhouse.

In Oregon, when a defendant is charged with murder, aggravated murder or treason, release shall be denied when “the proof is evident or the presumption strong that the person is guilty.”

When the court took its first break, a defense attorney remarked that Monday was the first time any of the defense attorneys or their clients had seen the surveillance video that reportedly shows the group in Woodland transporting Huggins’ body.

Anyone with information regarding this case is asked to contact Detective Jim Lawrence at 503-823-0867, james.lawrence@portlandoregon.gov

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