The raid of a motorcycle shop in Denair may have something to do with stolen parts, because an investigator was checking serial numbers on motorcycles during a search at another location Friday, according to a neighbor who questioned FBI agents at the scene.
A high-profile search was conducted Friday at Road Dog Cycle, a shop specializing in Harley-Davidson motorcycles and parts, owned by one-time Stanislaus County sheriff's deputy Robert Cliff Holloway. The other search was at the home of Brent Holloway, Robert Holloway's son.
Bill Bashor said federal agents in fatigues were crawling across his neighbor's lawn shortly after 8 a.m., while others screamed for Brent Holloway to come out with his hands up.
It was an alarming scene, and Bashor said he grew more concerned after he spoke with an investigator from the Stanislaus County district attorney's office.
"Your next door neighbor is heavily into the Hells Angels," Bashor recalled the investigator saying, "and they aren't just collecting toys for tots."
No one was home, so agents broke down the door of Brent Holloway's Adair Road home west of Modesto, and swarmed the house and a garage where Holloway rebuilt motorcycles and kept spare parts, Bashor said. As the day wore on, investigators loaded two computers and other items into sport utility vehicles, Bashor said.
Bashor said he also spoke with an investigator who was typing serial numbers from motorcycles into a laptop, checking to see whether any were stolen.
A similar scene took place at Robert Holloway's motorcycle shop at Santa Fe Avenue and Main Street in Denair. His home on Moberg Road in Turlock was searched, too, according to one source.
The Central Valley Gang Impact Task Force executed the search warrants, but what it was looking for is confidential because a search warrant signed by a federal judge in Sacramento has been sealed. A spokeswoman for the FBI said no arrests were made. The FBI belongs to the task force.
The elder Holloway, a retired sheriff's deputy, gained notoriety in July 1997 after he confronted a career criminal who tried to rob his motorcycle shop, accidentally shooting and killing the man during a scuffle. Prosecutors filed a murder charge, but a jury returned a not guilty verdict in 2001.
Figured everything legitimate
Robert Holloway, 60, declined to comment.
Brent Holloway, 35, could not be reached for comment.
Bashor said his neighbor had not been home in a few days, adding that he has not seen signs of criminal activity at his neighbor's house.
He questioned the need for authorities' show of force, saying Brent Holloway's sister-in-law lives nearby and would have gladly unlocked the door. Most of all, he wonders what the authorities are looking for.
"I always figured everything was legitimate here," Bashor said. "But it makes you wonder when that many agents spend that much time."
Bee staff writer Susan Herendeen can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 578-2338.