A Baltimore police officer and a retired officer have been charged in an alleged fight between rival motorcycle clubs last year in Essex, authorities said.
Sgt. David Crites, a detective in the city's Southeastern District, was suspended with pay after he was charged by Baltimore County police last week with second-degree assault and other violations.
Keith Romans, who retired from the city police force in 2012, faces the same charges.
Crites and Romans are members of the Chosen Sons Motorcycle Club, Baltimore County police said. A confrontation between members of the Chosen Sons and the Iron Order motorcycle clubs last June 7 escalated into a fight, said county police spokeswoman Elise Armacost.
The Chosen Sons and Iron Order "have a history of bad blood," she said. Police do not know what prompted the fight, she said, "beyond the fact that the two clubs do not like one another."
Baltimore County police recently charged another alleged Chosen Sons member, also a retired city police officer, with assault and related charges in a fight at a Dundalk bar in February.
In that incident, police say, members of the Chosen Sons and the Iron Horsemen Motorcycle Club assaulted Iron Order members at Kenny B's Blue Marlin bar in Dundalk.
Retired city police officer Eric Christopher Jansen, 47, was charged with assault, robbery and related charges.
Police said Jansen was recognized on surveillance video by a county officer with the Regional Auto Theft Task Force, with which Jansen worked until 2014. The county officer said he recognized Jansen's long beard and his habit of wearing his knit cap "pulled down just about his eyes."
A message left at a number on the Chosen Sons website Wednesday was not returned.
Baltimore police spokesman Jeremy Silbert said city police officers are "prohibited from making personal contacts with persons of questionable character, or visiting places where suspected violations of the law may be occurring, unless necessary to do so in the performance of their duty."
Silbert said Crites will remain suspended during the investigation. Crites has been employed by the department since 2003, Silbert said.
Jansen, who retired in September, was charged last month in the Dundalk bar fight.
County police said four Iron Order members were at the bar when Iron Horsemen members came in and began to physically attack them. Then Chosen Sons members entered the bar and joined in the attack, police said.
One man was taken to the hospital, and three others were treated at the scene, police said.
Police said Jansen was seen on surveillance video pushing a woman out of the way to strike a man, and then punching another man twice in the face. He then appeared to kick someone on the ground, police said.
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