California professor allegedly ran biker gang, drug ring
SAN BERNARDINO, Calif. -- A veteran professor at California State University, San Bernardino, who chaired academic committees, tweeted his concerns about child obesity and lived quietly in a well-trimmed neighborhood, stands accused of living a s...
SAN BERNARDINO, Calif. -- A veteran professor at California State University, San Bernardino, who chaired academic committees, tweeted his concerns about child obesity and lived quietly in a well-trimmed neighborhood, stands accused of living a shadow life of a heavily armed biker-gang drug dealer.
The San Bernardino County Sheriff on Thursday said Stephen J. Kinzey, a 43-year-old kinesiology professor, allegedly led a local chapter of the "Devils Diciples Outlaw" motorcycle gang (the group intentionally misspells "disciples" in its name) and a methamphetamine drug operation that brought in tens of thousands of dollars in drug money.
Authorities arrested nine suspected midlevel and street-level dealers involved in the drug ring shortly after raiding Kinzey's home, where they allegedly found more than a pound of methamphetamine, rifles, handguns, body armor, and leather biker vests and other biker paraphernalia. Kinzey remains a fugitive and is considered armed and dangerous, officials said.
During Friday's raid, detectives arrested Kinzey's live-in girlfriend, Holly V. Robinson, 33, a 2005 Cal State San Bernardino graduate. She is accused of being Kinzey's "business partner" in the drug operation and faces methamphetamine distribution charges; she has been released on bail. Police also found an undisclosed amount of cash at the couples' house and said all the guns recovered were unregistered.
"To have an associate professor who is a member of the Devils Diciples and allegedly dealing methamphetamine is quite alarming. I mean, it's unusual to say the least," Sheriff Rod Hoops said at a news conference in San Bernardino.
Lead Detective Jason Rosenbaum said the joint Sheriff-FBI investigation began with a drug bust in the San Bernardino area six months ago and led quickly to the professor.
The drugs were sold through a network of dealers in the cities of San Bernardino, Highland and Redlands and the community of Mentone. The investigation is "still ongoing" about the possible sale of drugs on the college campus, Rosenbaum said.
Kinzey, who has taught at the university for 10 years, has a doctorate degree from the University of Toledo, a master's degree from Indiana State University and a bachelor's degree from Wayne State University, Michigan.
His father, Hank Kinzey of Rochester Hills, Mich., said he was "sick to my stomach" after learning about the allegations from a newspaper reporter Thursday afternoon.
"My son is a Christian. He's a good father of a good little girl," his father said. "My son doesn't drink. My son doesn't smoke. I don't get it. He's a Ph.D."
Along with allegedly being president of the mountain chapter of the Devils Diciples motorcycle club, county records show that Kinzey organized the San Bernardino-based "Saxon Motorcycle Club" in 2006. An article posted on the national website of the Boozefighters Motorcycle Club -- whose members were immortalized by the 1953 movie "The Wild One", starring Marlon Brando -- also described how Kinzey revived the Los Angeles area chapter of the Boozefighters club. Kinzey is referred to as "Skinz."
Kinzey's neighbors said the professor and his girlfriend were reserved, friendly and quiet, though occasionally their driveway would be filled with friends who rode over on their Harleys. Still, the couple never had loud parties or fired up their bikes late a night.