Former ATF Agent Beats Federal Government in Court
Take a former football player, mix in some motorcycles, add arson, murder, and smuggled guns and you the result is a former ATF agent who goes on to write the best selling book and is countersued by his former employer.
Jay “Jaybird” Dobyns, born in Indiana in 1981, grew up in Tucson where he turned into a terrific athlete in school prior to heading to college to showcase his skills on the gridiron. After college, Dobyns played in the U.S. Football leave before moving into national law enforcement.
As an agent with Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms (ATF), Dobyns climbed through the ranks as he worked more than 450 plain clothes operations, developed specialised knowledge in criminal investigations, gang infiltrations and hired killings. Dobyns found himself sent to notorious events such as the disturbances in California following the Rodney King videotaped beating, Waco, Texas, Columbine, and Oklahoma City.
In 2002, a fight erupted between Hells Angels and their sworn enemies, Mongols Motorcycle. The fight, in the midst of a Nevada casino, caught innocent bystanders in the crowd and prompted authorities to begin a surreptitious probe named “Black Biscuit,” involving Dobyns.
Dobyns documented his experiences in No Angel – My Harrowing Undercover Journey to the Inner Circle of the Hells Angels (Random House ISBN 978-0-307-40585-2 (0-307-40585-0)
For twenty-four months, Dobyns was undercover with a crew of ATF representatives and penetrated the Hells Angels. Dobyns’ roll was a gun dealer and a brother of another motorcycle group intrigued by becoming a Hell’s Angel. To earn full membership in the group, Dobyns staged a fake “killing” of a Mongols Motorcycle member. The Angels were impressed and “patched” Dobyns in.
“Black Biscuit” was called a success by ATF and resulted in multiple indictments for RICO violations. Government ineptness drove defendants getting lighter punishment or seeing their charges dropped outright.
When Dobyns was exposed, household members became the focus of deadly warnings by numerous organizations. Formal statements by federal watchdog agencies show ATF failed to use reasonable care in protecting Dobyns and his family.
In 2008 ATF managers withdrew Dobyns protection and that of his family. Cover tales, bogus identities, and untrackable operators permits were revoked as the ATF claimed the actions were no longer supported.
Four months later, Dobyns’ Tucson home was destroyed by fire. His spouse and children, sleeping inside, managed to escape. Dobyns was the prime suspect and was terminated by the ATF as “unstable.”
Dobyns filed a federal lawsuit against ATF and the government counter-sued. In 2014, following a pitched six-year battle, Dobyns won his case. The judge, Francis Allegra, delivered a 54-page verdict which vindicated Dobyns, pointed to ATF and said they attempted to frame Dobyns.
The ATF’s countersuit, which tried to take the royalties from Doby’s book, was dismissed and the judge ruled ATF was corrupt.
Today Dobyns is involved with charitable causes dedicated to Africa, finding a cure for Parkinson’s and Safe Call Now, a non-profit intended to provide counseling and support to public safety personnel and their families.