[LAST EDITED 5.17.2020]
Since posting my first blog on this subject, I have obtained the official 600+ page police investigative report on the 2004 Alrosa Villa shooting directly from the Public Records Unit of Columbus, OH. I have also found what I believe to be the only on camera interview available to the public of the killer's mother Mary Clark, which was originally broadcast on WE Network's series "Secret Lives of Women." This particular episode was called "Mothers of Murderers," and was still available to download for $1.99 from itunes last I checked. The camera footage allegedly filming the shooting from the stage will also be referenced here as well as the book "Courage and Carnage at Alrosa Villa." The only reason I will refer to that book from time to time is because as far as I know it is the only thorough independent investigation on the subject available and was allegedly put together in cooperation with the killer's mother, Mary Clark.
While I do assert opinions here and there, every attempt was made to make it clear when I am doing so, in order to distinguish my opinions from the raw information presented. My hope here is not necessarily that everyone agrees with all of my observations, but that the raw information presented can help some get a better understanding of what occurred here, and how the mass media can be very one-sided in their coverage of such events.
SECTION 1 - A Look at Nathan Gale's military discharge papers/reasons.
SECTION 2 - An examination of various official photos, documents, and alleged facts associated with Nathan Gale.
SECTION 3 - A detailed examination of witness accounts and facts regarding what occurred in the hours/moments BEFORE the shootings, as well as an examination of what occurred in the moments after.
Within 24 hours of the 2004 Alrosa Villa shooting, police investigators were already telling the public that "we may never know the motive." This statement has not changed despite the fact that the investigation has long since been concluded. Let's be very specific about what this means. This means that according to police investigators:
Statements made by Phil Anselmo to the press regarding Dimebag Darrell prior to the Alrosa Villa shootings have NOT been conclusively linked to the shootings in any way.
Nathan Gale's alleged "paranoid schizophrenic" condition has NOT been specifically determined as a factor linked to the shootings.
"Nathan had to go see a counselor there at the Marines...they diagnosed him with paranoid schizophrenia and he was discharged...for medical problems" - Mary Clark [from WE "Secret Lives of Mothers" Aired August, 2009]
"Detectives also discovered that Nathan Gale had served in the armed forces, the Marine Division, and had been discharged because of being diagnosed as a paranoid schizophrenic. I, detective Gillette, obtained Nathan Gale's military record and copies of these records will be made a permanent part of this package." - Report # 041046046
[click on these images first, in order to save/blow them up at the correct resolution]
This seems to be part of the main discharge paper, DD Form 214. If we look at box 28, we get the official reason, DISABILITY NOT IN LINE OF DUTY. Well what sort of "disability" are we talking about? This could be anything. A bad knee, a bad hip, a mental disorder - we don't know. For detail, we can look at box 26, which contains a SEPARATION CODE. We know that this document represents the SEPARATION of Nathan Gale and the United States Marine Corps. So this code must contain details concerning this separation. Why do they do this?
"Hidden on practically every veteran's DD-214 discharge papers are secret code letters and numbers called Separation Program Numbers (SPN numbers) that might make obtaining veterans benefits difficult if not impossible. Here are these secret numeric codes that may make a difference in your future." -utvet.com
"SPN codes and Separation Codes are frequently assigned on the basis of subjective judgments which are difficult for the dischargee to challenge. Until recently, the codes had different meanings in each branch of service, and they have been changed several times, leaving them prone to misinterpretation by employers not possessing the proper key. Although employers are not supposed to know what the SPN codes mean, many have found out as a result of leaks from the agencies authorized to have them." -Touchstone Research Group, LLC
"the Department of Defense will no longer allow the military services to release the meanings of these codes to the general public. The below definitions were obtained before this prohibition went into effect." - www.thebalance.com
As we can see from the above information, these codes are difficult even for veterans to translate. I don't want to dwell on the "why" just yet, let's just start with box 26. Although the image resolution is not great, it appears to read JFP1.
JFP - Misconduct (Reason Unknown) or Disability not in the line of duty [thebalance.com]
JFP - Misconduct (Reason Unknown) or Disability not in the line of duty [Touchstone Research Group LLC]
Since the first 3 characters match and the wording describing JFP above EXACTLY matches the wording in box 28 of Gale's discharge certificate, I believe it is safe to assume this is the correct translation of this code. But again, this really tells us nothing specific about what Gale's "disability" may have been, making this information redundant.
Now let's take a look at box 27, which contains the term REENTRY CODE. Since we know this form represents Gale's exit from the Marines, this code logically represents the conditions under which Gale would be allowed to RE ENTER, if at all.
"Reentry codes are alphanumeric characters, found on the DD Form 214. RE Codes determine if Service Members can reenlist in the Army or transfer from another branch of service at a later time." - jointhemilitary.org
RE-3P - Personnel separated with disqualifications. Eligibility: Not eligible unless a waiver is granted. [jointhemilitary.org]
RE-3P - Physical disability (includes discharge and transfer to TDRL). Obesity. Motion sickness. Disqualified for officer candidate training. [Touchstone Research Group LLC]
Notice how vague the first code definition is. However, we get an extended definition from the Touchstone Research Group which clearly cites physical issues, including OBESITY. This definition is backed up by other documents in this file which we will take a look at now.
[Click on images in order to save/blow them up at the proper resolution]
[Note the stamp at the top of the above form which reads: "MAR 03 2003." I'm not sure why this stamp is there, as the date of violation is clearly indicated as being February 15th, 2003 in the notes - but regarding this date...March 3rd, 2003 is the exact date Chris Armold states in his book "Courage and Carnage at Alrosa Villa" that Nathan Gale was admitted into a mental ward at the USMC. He goes on to state that Gale was in there for a week and was determined to be a "very disturbed young man." None of the information in that book regarding Nathan Gale's alleged diagnosis, or his subsequent treatment during those last 8-9 months he spent in the military are mentioned at all in this official report.]
Gale's discharge certificate is dated 20031015 [October 15th, 2003]. The first administrative write up above is dated February 15th, 2003 within the text. The 2nd is dated 030415 [April 15th, 2003]. These are write ups notating "deficiencies" in Gale's performance.
The February 15th [19th?] write up is for an "unauthorized absence." It goes on to state "be where you are told to be when you are told to be there, looking like you are supposed to look." No reference to a mental condition, just a warning to shape up or ship out. They also threaten him with "administration separation," which means he could be DISCHARGED if he continues this behavior. Could a mental handicap be the underlining cause for this behavior? Sure, but it is not noted anywhere, so why would we assume that at all based on the official evidence so far?
Almost 2 months after the first write-up, we have another stating "Your body fat measured at 29% is grossly over your max allowed limit of 18%...it can be concluded that the condition is because of apathy or lack of self discipline." Does it sound like Gale is being reprimanded for having a mental handicap? Note that the date of this violation is April 15th, almost a month AFTER Chris Armold's book states he was admitted into a MENTAL WARD, and determined to be a "very disturbed young man." Why is Chris Armold's book stating he was already determined to have a serious mental condition in March, yet the official documents we are looking at here make absolutely NO reference to a mental handicap in this write-up almost a MONTH later? His mental state is even specifically referenced by indicating APATHY and LACK OF SELF DISCIPLINE. He's also being threatened again with ADMINISTRATIVE SEPARATION. So this is twice he was threatened with discharge in official documents mentioning absolutely nothing about a mental illness!
These references to his weight are consistent with the above mentioned definition of "separation code RE-3P." Let's take another look at it.
RE-3P - Physical disability (includes discharge and transfer to TDRL). Obesity. Motion sickness. Disqualified for officer candidate training. [Touchstone Research Group LLC]
[Click on image in order to save/enlarge at the proper resolution]
After this blog was posted, I went back and dug up one more page from the administrative notes [above]. Note the clear references to RE-3P and a PHYSICAL DISABILITY, followed by Gale's signature of understanding. I don't think it can get any clearer that a PHYSICAL CONDITION was the reason for Nathan Gale's discharge from the USMC, at least according to the documents in the official investigative report. Could he have been diagnosed with a serious mental condition AFTER April 15th? Sure, but there is nothing in this report mentioning it [or at any other time during his tenure in the Marines for that matter]. To further confuse things, Chris Armold's book [the only source I have found anywhere to detail Nathan's diagnosis in the USMC] clearly states Gale's mental handicap was discovered a month before his senor officers seemed to be aware of it [as demonstrated in the documents above].
In a fax dated 12.15.04, Detective William Gillette requested all PERSONNEL RECORDS for Nathan Gale during his time in the Marines. The above fax [dated 12.16.04] came back the next day at 9:31AM, and clearly indicates that Gale's official military personal file (OMPF) was sent. A list showing these files makes no reference to medical documents or a mental health issue. The notes at the bottom of the page indicate that there really wasn't much else accept for "miscellaneous admin information." A detective is inquiring about a former Marine because he is a suspect in a MURDER. Do you think the Marines would withhold all references to a serious Mental health diagnosis when such records are being requested? I certainly hope not! Yet, the above makes it sound like no such files exist!
Although the above fax has no time of day listed on it, we can assume that since it is requesting MEDICAL RECORDS specifically, this information must not have been included in Gale's PERSONNEL RECORDS. As far as I can tell, none of these "medical records" are in this official report. After some research, I found that military medical records are held very tightly in the USMC, often in a separate building from a veteran's OMPF. How they determine where lines are drawn between the 2 reports, without revealing information about each other, is a mystery to me.
"In the 1990s, the military services discontinued the practice of filing health records with the personnel record portion at the NPRC. In 1992, the Army began retiring most of its former members' health records to the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). Over the next six years, the other services followed suit. In 2014, the military services discontinued the practice of retiring the records to the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). In order to determine where a medical record is located, please see the chart below" - www.archives.gov/
When I emailed the author of "Courage and Carnage at Alrosa Villa" about these medical documents, he explained to me that Mary Clark allowed him access to them. This is how he says he was able to write about and quote the documents in his book. The author, Chris Armold, is a known historian of militaria and is allegedly a high ranking retired military officer. So he is not someone I would question regarding the authenticity of such documents. But I was still taking his word for it, as no scans of the documents are included in the book, just alleged quotes. So I messaged a representative at the Columbus Police Records department about these missing documents and here is the response:
"Unfortunately those records are not public record. They are protected under HIPA and the Sunshine Laws for the State of Ohio. Records pertaining to diagnosis and treatment under O.R.C. 149.43(A)(1)(a). Suffice it to say that he did have mental issues which brought about an early release from the military."
Notice that the representative quoted above stated that Gale "did have mental issues which brought about an early release from the military." I responded by asking this representative which documents they were basing that statement upon, since none of the materials sent to me confirmed this. The representative, in so many words, revealed to me that they have the documents which state this but cannot release them to the public. I then asked how his mother may have gotten the documents. Here's the response:
"The only way his medical records would ever be released would be with a subpoena, which we did for a court action...These records were a part of the homicide package and were available only to the prosecutor presenting the case [concerning officer Niggemeyer's shooting of Gale] to the Grand Jury. I don't believe even his mother could get a copy of the records from the military and if she was able to get any records, they would be so heavily redacted, they would probably be useless. The military has VERY stringent rules on FOIA [Freedom of Information Act] requests, even more than we have. If for whatever reason his mother could get the records, she has the right to give them to anyone she wants since she is the next of kin..."
I think it is clear by now that there is no proof within the public domain that Gale was diagnosed and discharged from the Marines for being "paranoid schizophrenic." Further, his discharge papers seems to contradict this assumption. We also have a very reliable source casting a great deal of doubt on the idea that Mary Clark was ever in possession of any documents which prove Gale was discharged for being diagnosed paranoid schizophrenic. All we have at this point is her own testimony that her son TOLD HER he was diagnosed in the Marines and the word of Detective Gillette who cites documents which are not in this report.
I did do some research on the V.A. website and found that a veteran, a next of kin, or someone inquiring about such records with a written approval from either of the former, may be able to obtain that veteran's medical record. But there is no way to verify whether that request would be approved, how redacted it would be, or what the limitations would be regarding the sharing of such information. But I would think the opinion of someone who works in a County Record's department [such as the one quoted earlier from my correspondences] holds some weight.
"He was a big boy...he was awesome, he was my buddy. He was always making me laugh and everything...His father just didn't want any part of him...and growing up, that was very hard for Nathan..."
"Nate got into the drug scene like a lot of kids did...it was the middle of the night and I could hear Nathan roaming round the apartment...and he looked really scared and I go "hey Nathan, what's wrong?" and he goes, "they're watching me...they're out there they came to get me" He was so afraid...this was so real to him...I don't know if he started taking the drugs to get rid of the voices, or if the drugs CAUSED the voices in his head..."
"He came to me and said he wanted to go into the Marines...I go "well, are you off the drugs now?" And he goes, "yeah I quit taking drugs..." After boot camp there was a completely different Nathan Gale who came home...No paranoia at that time that I could see...I was so proud of him...I had no idea whatsoever that Nathan would ever shoot somebody."
[Notice how different Nathan Gale looks above from the below picture, taken about a year later or less. Is it even the same guy? Nathan Gale had at least 2 brothers, maybe 3. Were his brothers being used as DOUBLES in this crime he participated in? There are some "Dr Jekyl and Mr Hyde" moments in this report that I am not so sure "paranoid schizophrenia," a condition we have no proof he was diagnosed with, can so easily explain.]
"Nathan had to go see a counselor there at the Marines...they diagnosed him with paranoid schizophrenia and he was discharged...for medical problems...I kept asking him day after day "do you take your meds?" He'd say "yeah" and then walk away. Then all the sudden his paranoia started coming back again...I never thought he would do anything like this...My first concern was officer Niggemeyer because he was put in a terrible situation of having to take a life...I think not until that night...it all came to me. And when I had to start telling his brothers about what had happened..." - Mary Clark
We have not 1 interview with Nathan's brothers anywhere. It's as if they do not exist!
[look closely at the tattoo on Nathan's left bicep above, and the lines/fuzziness around it. See if you can figure out what it looks like. We're going to talk about that tattoo later in the blog]
[Notice in the "official footage" Nathan Gale is never in the same shot as any of the band members. They just sorta disappear from the stage just when Gale gets up there. None of them saw him coming, so why do they just jump away from camera view? And where are Gale's glasses here, can you see them? I hope he is wearing them, because if not he couldn't see anything and could not have accomplished what we are told he did!]
[Gale's thick glasses fell off his head, but when? How did his hat stay on his head so long after jumping a fence, dodging security, and shooting the bass tech, all before he finally went for Dimebag?]
GALE HAD VERY POOR VISION
First thing we can be sure about is that Nathan had very poor eyesight his entire life, and did not seem to wear contacts. You can see how thick his glasses are in a couple of the pictures. If you look at the later pictures, particularly the one where he is wearing what looks like some sort of "Hawaiian" shirt, he's wearing what is probably the same pair he wore when he shot all those people. That shirt was also found hanging in his closet [which we will look at in a moment] If he didn't have his glasses on, it is highly unlikely that this already unlikely event would have occurred the way it did. They are nearly impossible to spot in the grainy Alrosa Villa shooting footage, as it is very dark under the bill of his cap, but we do see them on the floor in that last picture which was taken directly from the official crime scene photos. In this report we have a witness account giving a brief window into the moments after Gale lost his glasses:
"Mr Greene indicated that he was the guitarist in the band 12 Gauge [who opened up for Damageplan the night of the shooting]..He was amongst a group of people that helped get "Dimebag" off the stage...After this he went back up on stage and attempted to render more aid. At this time he was confronted by the gunman...he stated the individual this time pointed a gun to him. Mr Greene indicated he raised his hands and stated, "tell me what you want?" The individual stated "I want my glasses." Mr Greene stated he pointed to the ground and stated "they're over there." -Summary #42, page 5
Clearly Gale was having a hard time seeing when his glasses fell off, which is possibly why he took John "Kat" Brooks as a hostage/human shield and backed up by the speakers. He knew he was done for at this point and taking a hostage was his last ditch effort at survival. According to Chris Armold's book, Jeff Thompson ripped them off when they were wrestling, but Armold gives other details in his book that contradict what witnesses state in the official report [such as the statement that Dimebag moved his own microphone stand just before being killed, when a witness stated the STAGE TECH moved it]. If I have to choose between witness' accounts who were there and Chris Armold's book - well, I know where my money is at.
GALE LEFT NO EVIDENCE OF BEING A PANTERA FAN
"Detectives did not observe any computers or magazines or compact discs of Pantera music" -Summary No 62
Although police never arrived at a motive, it is widely assumed Nathan Gale was a "crazy" Pantera fan who had some sort of issue with the members. I am not denying this was the case, but where is the proof? Yes, Gale went to a Damageplan show a few months before the Alrosa Villa gig and yes Gale went on stage and shot Dimebag during the next Damageplan show he attended, and yes his mom says he went to concerts - but does he own one Pantera shirt? Does he own one Pantera CD? Tape? Vinyl? Was there one single scribbled piece of paper lying around his apartment with Pantera lyrics on it which was included in this report? Nope. None of the above. The media told us this guy thought Pantera was stealing his ideas and lyrics. But what does Nathan tell us about his self based on appearances and evidence left behind?
These living quarters were photographed and included in the official report. They were supposedly taken the day after the murders in Nathan Gale's apartment, which he left the previous night and never returned to because he was killed.
The objects which are easy to make out here are a bottle of rubbing alcohol, a wallet, some change, cigarette box, lighter, ashtray, pen, beanie, wristwatch, various papers. What's wrong with this picture? Well he had a wallet, a watch, and a green lighter on him when he was killed! So what are they doing here sitting on his living room table, as if he just put them there after coming home from work? Nathan didn't live with any roommates. He took these things with him to the shooting and never came home, so how could they possibly have gotten back here for a photography session the day AFTER he was killed with these items on his body?
[If the above image is too small/blurry, you may need to tap/click on it first to properly blow it up]
When bodies are taken in by investigators, every item on the corpse is documented for reference purposes. What you see above is supposed to be the official document notating everything which was on Gale's body when he was found dead. Notice that there is no HAT or GLASSES mentioned there. That is because his hat and glasses supposedly fell off of his head during the mayhem. So I am just trying to drive home the point that these documents are VERY specific. This particular document would NOT include items sitting NEAR his body when he was dead, and certainly wouldn't include items sitting at home on his living room table!
Now imagine Gale chickened out and decided not to shoot anyone that evening. He'd come home and sit in his usual spot in the living room here. He'd put down his wallet, GREEN lighter, and watch on this table - and now there would be 2 of each item sitting there. I don't think "paranoid schizophrenia" necessarily explains this, something is off here. I leave it to you to decide what it means, but it's extremely odd, if nothing else, and should go into the file marked "fishy." How big does the "fishy file" need to get before we are dealing with a whale?
Just next to the sofa we have a table, upon which we can see a portable CD player. Next to it are headphones. A portable CD player was also found in the car Nathan drove to the Alrosa Villa the night of the murders, and contained a perfectly clean Damageplan CD. This was notated in the report, but no Damageplan CDs were found in his apartment. And speaking of that Damageplan CD, the jewel case does not seem to be in any of these pictures. What happened to it? One would assume he placed that Damageplan CD into the player just before leaving the house. So what did he do with the jewel case, throw it out the window? Other items on the table include screwdriver, phone, eraser, and multiple notepads. Nathan sure had lots of notepads lying around in random places! Despite all these notepads everywhere, there were only 2 notes in this report, containing "lyrics" which come off as more amateur/stupid than they do "crazy."
Look at that weight set and all the rust on it. Have you ever tried lifting weights with rusty bars? I have. The rust gets all on your palms and it can get in your blood stream if you get a cut from the small fragments of rusted metal. If you wear gloves, they would be red with rust. Where are the gloves here in the apartment, I don't see them in any of the pictures? How does a weight set get this rusty anyhow? From sitting in storage, in a moist room. This weight set looks like it was pulled out of storage from the 60s or 70s and just put here as a prop. It looks fishy. Gale was a big guy, but pudgy on the autopsy table, and didn't seem to have much muscle mass on his arms. More fishy details piling up...Those are not band CDs on the shelf back there, they have identical labels - they are probably DVD-RWs [more on that shortly]. Also note the VHS tape and RCA cables.
What is the purpose of the above picture, so you can see the bottom half of these blinds? So we can check out that pencil way down on the ground there? The only important items in the image are the ones sitting on top of the TV. What was he watching? Don't we wanna figure out what was going on in his head before the shootings? Don't we wanna discover a possible motive? Thanks a lot Mr Camera man for making it nearly impossible to see what is written on that DVD-RW!
I went and cropped the image, rotated it, and adjusted the contrast. It says "Nathan Gale" next to the top yellow line, and "Lima Thunder" next to the 2nd yellow line. If you remember Camcorder video cameras, they took video footage using VHS tapes. He was converting video footage of the football team he played for to DVD. That's what the unit is on top of his TV, a VHS to DVD converter, I used to own a similar unit myself. Now why would a guy about to embark on a suicide mission care to catalog his football games for a future he would never be there to see? This is evidence that he was not pre-meditating the murders. I mean, was he really so crazy as to think he'd just come back and live a normal life after blowing away Dimebag and that he'd be able to watch his Lima Thunder games with his buddies years later? We can't just use Gale's alleged mental illness to explain every detail and contradiction we can't explain. Especially when there is no documented evidence of his diagnosis that we can point to!
This is the DVD which is partially obscured in the above photo. Eurotrip is a comedy. Nathan Gale was watching a comedy in the days prior to committing the Alrosa Villa massacre? Seems kind of odd he was watching a comedy like this and not "Apocalypse Now" or the Pantera "Vulgar Video" or something along the lines that an extremely "obsessive Pantera Fan" would watch. So far, not really seeing much proof of this obsession, or that he is even a fan of heavy metal at all. If investigators were interested in finding a motive, these details would be very important.
NATHAN WAS EXTREMELY PROUD OF BEING A MARINE
Although it's really not apparent that Nathan was a fan of Pantera by looking around his apartment, he was clearly a big fan of the Marines. The picture we saw earlier where he's in front of the Christmas tree looking slim and clear eyed? Seems he took the whole thing pretty seriously, even after he was discharged. Why else would he have these on display in his living room up to the day he left for his assassination mission? [These are sitting over by his lamp if you look back at the wide panned living room image above] Also, let's take note here: Nathan learned how to shoot and kill in the Marines. Does that mean the Marines are to blame for what Nathan did? No, that is not what I am saying, but facts are facts. He learned to kill in the Marines. We don't ignore facts that make us feel uncomfortable when we are searching for a motive. Marines take an oath to defend their country and its people. He didn't use any of the skills he learned to defend the people he took an oath to defend. Instead, he went and murdered those very same people he took an oath to protect, using the skills the Marines taught him. He did exactly the OPPOSITE of what his oath stated.
Nathan only had 3 tattoos. Were any of them Pantera or rock band tattoos? No, he was really into being a Marine and that is why he had the symbol for the Marines tattooed on his arm. The barbed wire tattoo is mentioned in the Chris Armold book, and we have an unfinished grim reaper tattoo. This unfinished reaper tattoo is on his left bicep, which we can partially see in an earlier photo where he was wearing the "hawaiian" shirt. I blew this section of that photo up above so you can see, it does appear to be "filled in" much more than it appears in the autopsy photo. And as blurry as it is, it doesn't really even look like the same tattoo does it? Is that why that black streak is there just about where the tattoo is? Was this black streak put there on purpose to make the tattoo harder to see? If you go back and look at the bigger version of this Hawaiian shirt pic, you will notice it is cropped hard on the right side, limiting view of Gale's left forearm. Was this done to conceal the fact he had no barb wire tattoo there? Logical question, given the "doctored up" look of the reaper tat.
What we are seeing here is evidence that the corpse in the autopsy photos that is supposed to be Nathan Gale, is not the same person pictured in the Hawaiian shirt. Were doubles of Nathan Gale used in this crime? Again, where are the interviews with his brothers we have never seen/heard anything from? For all we know, he could have a twin!
People who get tattoos often do them in sessions. Sometimes for financial reasons, sometimes just to break it up because it can be painful. The person in that autopsy photo had plans to finish this reaper tattoo some day. He wasn't planning on being dead before that could happen. More evidence he did not pre-meditate the Alrosa Village rampage, even if he did get up on stage a few months earlier at a Damageplan show and just sorta "messed equipment up" to no logical end.
One other possibility that occurred to me is that the reaper tattoo could have been done POSTMORTEM. Is it even an actual tattoo? Could have been drawn on for the photo. Whatever the case, if the image was added postmortem, it would explain why the earlier Hawaiian shirt photo would need to be doctored up, because it wasn't there yet! It would also explain the unfinished/out of place look of it. And why would "they" have done this? Well the barbed wire and USMC tattoos don't really point to anything sinister - but a grim reaper tattoo? That supports Gale's "homicidal maniac" persona with regard to optics. Just something to consider.
In Nathan's bedroom we find a combination CD player/Radio. The antenna is up, indicating he probably used it sometimes to listen to the radio. No jewel cases anywhere, no sign that any CDs are being listened to. It would seem to make more sense for this thing to be by his workout station, rather than having chords from his portable CD player dangling all over the place as he bench presses his rusty weights. Anyhow, here it is, another CD player with no CDs anywhere.
The Q-Tip , oil, and cloth were obviously used to clean and lube his gun. We can even see how the Q-Tip is dirty, presumable from dipping it into alcohol before using it to clean the inside of his gun. How the rubbing alcohol wandered off into the living room when he clearly had his "gun cleaning station" in his bedroom I don't know. Seems kinda odd. Cleaning items, receipt, a couple pennies, empty bottle of water, and some sort of list print out, random wicker basket. No jewel cases anywhere.
[Why did Nathan Gale have a 2005 calendar siting in his bedroom when he was gonna die in December 2004? More evidence his Alrosa Villa "suicide mission" was not planned]
Here in Nathan's closet we can see the Hawaiian shirt he was wearing in a picture I posted earlier in the blog. This supports the idea that the Hawaiian shirt picture was likely taken close to the time of the murders. Keep in mind, if the man wearing the Hawaiian shirt in the above photos is NOT the same person in the autopsy photos [which seems highly likely given the mismatched left arm bicep tattoo example demonstrated earlier] it means everything in that TV show Mary Clark appeared in, could very well be distorted or completely fabricated. The fact that this SAME shirt appears in the "official" police report also brings into question the legitimacy of ALL of these photos, and probably the entire report itself!
There are several "jersey" type shirts here, similar in design to the one Nathan wore when he committed the massacre. Again, he chose to wear a sports Jersey, not a band hoodie to a Heavy Metal concert. Yes I realize many rockers are into sports, but here we have an "obsessive Pantera fan" and not one single rock/metal shirt, hoodie, or sweater to be seen anywhere in his apartment [there are also no heavy metal or rock shirts or any indication that he was even into music in any of the earlier pictures of Nathan. Doesn't mean he wasn't but certainly no evidence he was, much less "obsessive"] There is what looks like a jean jacket in there with the sleeves cut off, so at least we have some indication that he may have dressed "like a rocker" on occasion. But overall, we get the sense of someone much more interested in sports, guns, and the military than music so far. [The blue box on the upper shelf of this picture is the box his gun came in]
WAS NATHAN ON HIS WAY IN OR OUT?
Was Nathan preparing to leave, or did he just move in? According to Chris Armold's book I mentioned earlier, Nathan moved in here in January, so he'd been here for many months already according to that book. Look at how his clothes are stored here. Travel bags, a grubby storage bin [with a nice clean folded pair of pants on top of it], and snowboarding boots just on the outer right. We're told in the report that Mary Clark stated Gale had no friends - male or female. Well who did he go snowboarding with if he had no friends? There's gloves sitting neatly stuffed inside one of the boots [partially pictured off to the right] which tells me he went fairly recently. I am not a snowboarder but as far as I know its a pretty social activity. Perhaps he went with his brothers whom nobody has seen or heard anything from?
If you've ever known someone who grows marijuana you might have noticed plastic storage bins such as the one Nathan is using as a laundry hamper above. They are very good for putting plant debris into, which naturally gives them a dusty, grubby appearance, and can even turn them green as we see near the handle of the storage bin above. Nathan had a job doing tree work around this time, so it seems likely this storage bin could have been used for such a job. It looks like someone just packed all of his stuff into the first storage containers and travel bags they could find in the apartment. Why does it feel like someone is preparing to move out? Was Nathan preparing to hit the "highway to hell" after his suicide mission?
Why is there a box of junk sitting neatly on the otherwise clear floor? There are at least 4 ice cube trays sitting in that box. Why aren't they in the freezer and who needs that many anyhow? When you first move into a place [or start moving out], this is something you might see. He found the time to put fridge magnets and notes on his refrigerator, but hasn't bothered to use his ice trays yet? If he does have 1 or 2 trays in his freezer, it means he has 5 or 6! Notes on the fridge = I spend time in my kitchen facing my fridge. If he spends time facing his fridge, he probably uses it. A closer look at the fridge reveals an EZ Auto Inventory list. I looked this company up, they appear to sell used cars. Nathan's car, which he drove to the murder scene, was recently purchased according to the report. He had a Cadillac just before that. 2 different cars and how many jobs and how many different social activities within a year of leaving the military?
Looks like Nathan was missing an entire burner on his stove. You can see above, there's just a big hole where the burner should be. When you clean your stove top, you might remove the metal plates which sit on top of the burner, but the burner itself? Kinda odd that the one angle we get of the stove top happens to have a missing burner.
I went and dug up another image showing a different angle of the stove in his kitchen. First, notice his uniform for Davy Tree and the grubby appearance of it. Think that storage bin in his closet goes with it? Could be.
It looks like someone is CLEANING things here. Why would Nathan Gale be in the middle of cleaning, then just stop like a switch was flipped? He was gonna be dead soon, was he cleaning things up to make the job easier for the landlord to get it back into shape for the next tenant? Notice how well this alleged "paranoid schizophrenic" condition of his works anytime something appears off here. We can always just say, "ah well, he was crazy don't bother looking into it!" But what if he wasn't diagnosed as mentally ill? Then what explains this stuff? I'm not suggesting he wasn't a nut or that he didn't do the things he is believed to have done, I'm just trying to make sense of these details we are looking at. Nobody does anything "for no reason," even if those reasons might be way too strange or seemingly insignificant to figure out by using logic. Doesn't mean we should give up trying. Maybe something smells funny here in this kitchen because there IS something funny going on?
Not one dish, no pots and pans anywhere, not one sign that cooking or eating has occurred recently. Seats with cushions on them, but no table. Could a table even fit in this room?
A closer look at the sink clearly reveals someone is cleaning. Both drains have been pulled out of the sinks and set on either side of them. 2 rags also sit on either side of both sinks. It's as if someone was cleaning and just sorta stopped to take pictures. Well I hope it isn't the people taking the pictures, because it is illegal to clean a crime scene before documenting it exactly as the suspect left it! It is criminals who clean crime scenes before details are accurately captured, for the obvious reason that it removes evidence of their guilt!
More notepads, one on the microwave, one next to the sink right next to a rag that was probably wet. What was Nathan writing on this notepad, crazy lyrics about killing Dimebag?
Mathematical equations, phone numbers, and a name: Acloche. I typed this name "acloche" into google and the first result was a job hiring agency in Columbus, Ohio [http://www.acloche.com]. The second word, "Addeco" is also a hiring agency that still exists as of the day I write this. These words are in alphabetical order, because he was probably going through the phone book [old school pre-internet job hunting routine]. He was only at the letter "A" meaning he just started looking right before the murders!
Nathan Gale was looking for a job in the days/weeks before his suicide mission. Does that mean he didn't do what they say he did? No, but it is more evidence he did not pre-meditate these murders. A man about to embark on a suicide mission doesn't NEED a job because he's not going to be alive for much longer! He held at LEAST 2 jobs that we know of in the year between leaving the military and his suicide mission, and he was still looking! He was also playing football with Lima Thunder, joined a Fraternal Order [more on that later], and owned at least 2 cars in that year since leaving the military. This was a very productive, and social schizophrenic homicidal maniac!
EVIDENCE OF INTENT TO KILL DIMEBAG (OR LACK THEREOF)
"The residence was in a neat and orderly fashion..." [Summary #62]
The only thing this report mentions regarding this apartment besides the above is that Nathan's gun case was found and in the case, "some scrap paper containing what appears to be song lyrics."[Summary #62] Seems like investigators were very specific about what they were looking for here. Once they found it, "well the rest of the place was in an orderly fashion, let's just skip all that because we got the goods right here."
If these "lyrics" were really sitting inside the box that the murder weapon came in, there's really no way to deny the real intent behind the words, however crappy, juvenile, and thoughtless they might appear. But given the fact that this report doesn't mention any of the oddities we've observed, and given the fact that signs this scene was tampered with are apparent, it wouldn't be so hard to imagine that investigators would have planted this note directly inside the gun box just to help move things along and wrap the case up quicker. "Let's just tell the public we don't know the motive, but show them this note and tell them it was inside the gun case. They'll jump to their own conclusions and no more questions will be asked!"
If we look at Nathan's car for a moment, investigators are showing us this portable CD player. This is not the same portable CD player we saw in his house, so Nathan apparently had 2 of these. The earphones are also not the same as the ones in the apartment. One might guess he picked the CD up very recently because that album was fairly new at that time. Where is the jewel case? Not in this car, didn't see it anywhere in his apartment photos. The guy was obsessed with Pantera, thinks they stole his thoughts, doesn't own one CD of the band, but DOES own a brand new looking Damageplan CD with no jewel case and no lyrics to scrutinize. He was obsessed with lyrics. He didn't wanna read the Damageplan lyrics before going into the club? You know, to kind of work himself up into a mad schizophrenic rage?
"MS Clark related she helped her son, Nathan, purchase the red Grand AM about a month ago..." - Summary #75
Nope, no Damageplan jewel case back here. Like his apartment, very bare ["orderly"] but old and grungy looking. As if it had just recently been cleaned/vacuumed after years of being dirty. I'm guessing this is because he just picked it up from EZ auto about a month ago. Fairly new driver's license [issued 3 months before the shootings], newly obtained car [he had a Cadillac just before this], apartment that looks just moved into (or about to be moved out of) even though he'd been there since January according to Chris Armold's book...why does Nathan's life feel hastily constructed before the shootings? You know this CD here could have easily been planted just to move the case along and wrap things up quicker. "I'll just leave this nice new Damageplan CD in the portable CD player so people can imagine my evil face in their mind as I drove to Alrosa Villa that night. That way if investigators can't determine a motive, at least the public will have some obvious conclusions to jump to."
Nathan liked to smoke. We're told he was spotted pacing around the Alrosa Villa smoking, one would imagine, anxiously. The ashtray in his living room had about 1 butt in it. He was about to go on his assassination/suicide mission. He wasn't chain smoking before he left? I don't see any butts in the above ash tray, even though it is in the open position [this photo should be pretty high resolution. Click on it, then blow it up if you like, there are no visible butts in that ashtray] There was a few pennies in his bedroom and a few on his living room table, and a few sitting here in his car. Sparsely placed change all over the place, pens and scrap paper all over the place, 1 random drinking container in several photos - but no real signs of long term habitation anywhere. More signs of someone "on the move." It all kinda feels a bit "temporary" and a bit too artificially constructed to me.
WHO IS/WAS GALE'S FATHER?
Nathan Gale's mother is named Mary Clark. Above she states that Nathan's father wanted nothing to do with him, we think, from a very early age. So if Nathan's father was such an asshole, why did he take his father's last name instead of his mother's? Traditionally speaking, I suppose this is the norm even when a father disowns a child. But another question is, who is Nathan Gale's father and why have we heard nothing from him or about him regarding this event?
"...schizophrenia definitely has a very significant genetic component. Those who have a third degree relative with schizophrenia are twice as likely to develop schizophrenia as those in the general population. Those with a second degree relative have a several-fold higher incidence of schizophrenia than the general population, and first degree relatives have an incidence of schizophrenia an order of magnitude higher than the general populace." www.schizophrenia.com
This story is a very extreme and rare example of a homicidal paranoid schizophrenic. Don't we want to know if Gale may have inherited this horrible mental disease from his father or some other relative? I find it a bit strange that we've heard from the tattoo guy across the street, some unreliable "friends" of Nathan [his mom said he had no friends], the Quickie Lube guy who Nathan worked for - there's even a quote floating around out there from a guy who claimed to know Nathan from the Fraternal Order of the Eagles - but we haven't heard anything whatsoever from Nathan's father or his brothers. Wouldn't these people be the ones to talk to regarding Gale's possible motives? These relatives of Gale's seem to be strangely invisible and investigators simply left them all out of this report entirely, as if they didn't exist! Did Nathan Gale's brothers have information that might turn this story on its head? Guess we'll never know.
The birth certificate for Nathan Gale included in this report, which was issued November 16th, 2000. [note Gale was born 9/11 - is this true or does someone have a sick sense of humor?] It gives the time and place where he was born, but lists no names of any relatives. My birth certificate has my mother and father's name on it. How about yours? I didn't even know that birth certificates could be issued in the United States without at least one parent's name on it. The marks we see going up and down look like a footprint. Is this supposed to illustrate that it is an old document or that text was never removed from the large blank areas after it was discovered in his grungy apartment? I'm no expert, but this looks like a questionable document. I did, however, manage to find a public record of a Nathan Miles Gale, listed in Ohio Death Records, 1938-2007 - born 11 Sep 1979, died 8 Dec 2004. This is the same guy who supposedly shot Dimebag Darrell, and his mother's maiden name is listed as "Meadors." His father's surname is listed as "Gale."
Notice the license was issued 9.23.2004, about 3 months before the Alrosa Villa shooting.
During the television segment I mentioned earlier, Mary briefly holds up what looks like Nathan's obituary in laminated form. This lists off a few facts we already knew, but a few that are not really commonly known. The address for the Marysville Eagle's Lodge #3506 is 227 S Main St, Marysville, OH. That is the location of a Fraternal Order of the Eagles Aerie. What sort of "Fraternal Order" would admit a socially odd wacko such as Nathan during this time of his presumably downward spiral? We are told Nathan's mom was a "bartender" or a "waitress" there (I've read both).
The Fraternal Order of the Eagles claim to have founded Mother's Day and to have helped establish Social Security in the United States. These things may be true, but their logo is also a bird of prey and their initials are F.O.E. Foe? Of who?
"To be eligible for membership in the Fraternal Order of the Eagles, you must be a citizen of the United States or Canada over the age of 18 who believes in God." - http://www.foe2224.org
Does this mean Nathan believed in God? Apparently he had to in order to join the F.O.E.
[Note - You may need to click on these images in order to blow them up properly]
The above recruitment form is dated 2.12.2002. In box 11 we can clearly see Nathan had "no preference" when it came to religion. I suppose this means that when he enlisted, he didn't care much about god or religion since he had no preference.
The above form is dated 12.18.2002. Now he says he's ROMAN CATHOLIC. So somewhere between February and December of 2002, Nathan "found god." Nathan is short for "Nathaniel." This word comes from the Greek version of a Hebrew name and means "god has given." A "GALE" is a strong wind. Nathan's middle name was MILES. "English: occupational name for a servant or retainer, from Latin miles ‘soldier’, sometimes used as a technical term in this sense in medieval documents." [ancestry.com] Nathan's full name means "a soldier riding a strong wind, given by god." I thought this was a good place to throw that in. Anyhow, apparently Nathan's newfound Catholic Faith occurred within less that a year of joining the military.
"You must be sponsored by 2 members of a Fraternal Order of Eagles Aerie [where birds of prey nest] or auxiliary..Your application will be read at a regular Aerie/Auxiliary meeting and you will be interviewed by the local membership committee...When the vote in concluded, you will be notified and asked to present yourself for the F.O.E. Initiation Ritual. The Ritual is a set of rules by which Eagles are to conduct themselves not only in the confines of the Aerie, but in life in general. It's one of the most outstanding models for living a good and useful life. It was designed to teach candidates for membership the highest standards of human conduct expected of us." -http://www.foe2224.org
Mary Clark stated in the report that Gale would go to concerts and sometimes come home with a black eye or a busted lip. She also stated that he was shooting his mouth off at the Eagle's Tavern where she worked about his diagnosis in the military. She states she told him not to reveal this information about himself so easily in public. Yet, he managed to get 2 recommendations in order to be admitted into the Eagle's Lodge and pass all of these initiation rituals which required proof of aspirations to higher moral values? Again, here is an organization Gale presumably took various "oaths" to, in order to set some sort of "outstanding example" as a citizen, PASSES whatever stingent qualifications they required, then went out and did exactly the OPPOSITE for his society!
Let's recap again all the things Nathan did in that year after getting discharged from the Marines: Gets a Cadillac, gets a Pontiac, gets a job at the lube place, does some tree work, continues looking for work, joins a football team [Lima Thunder], joins the Marysvale Eagle's Lodge [at which he presumably participates in some complex rituals where all of these judges are scrutinizing his character], partakes in target practice regularly [one would assume with the gun his mother bought for him], goes snowboarding, starts getting tattoos, gets a new license, goes to concerts and comes home with black eyes and bloody lips [and causes $3000 worth of damage to Damageplan's equipment at Bogart's] - this guy kept himself busy in that year after he was discharged! It's hard to believe he had no friends what with all these activities and having his "human conduct" put under a microscope like this - all while he's walking invisible dogs, calling attorneys regarding Pantera's plot to "steal his thoughts," talking to invisible people, writing crappy lyrics on scraps of paper, and planning to murder Dimebag Darrell while not listening to any Pantera albums on any of his 3 CD players! [4 if you count the unit on top of his TV, which probably could play audio CDs]
"Ms Clark also related Nathan had no male or female friends." - Summary #75
Nathan learned to shoot in the Marines. So his "love" of target practice obviously was born there. Once he was discharged, he was only alive for about another year. Within this year, I am guessing, is when he earned his reputation as one who "loved" target practice. A trait immortalized right in his obituary. His mom knew [or so she says] he had a serious mental condition requiring meds as soon as he was released from the USMC, which she says he went off of. Yet she was Ok with all of this target practice during that last year leading up to the murders, using the gun she bought him? On top of that, she's going to then memorialize her son this way in his obituary? I don't know what's more unbelievable, what Nathan Gale did at Alrosa Villa or the story around it!
In this final section, we're going to take a very close look at what occurred just before the shooting took place. What happened during the shooting has been documented exhaustively, so if I refer to the shooting itself, I will only do so where I feel the detail is newly observed or less known.
There are at least 11 different security guards interviewed in this report. I read there were about 15 on duty the night of the shooting. The Alrosa Villa is not a huge place, and it was at about half capacity on this night [200 plus people]. Given the fact that there were at least 20 club employees and who knows how many technicians, roadies, and band assistance, it's really hard to comprehend how this big guy just jumped right over a fence, walked right on stage, and shot the most important person in the entire club right there on stage, dead. In fact, the Abbott family and two witnesses both filed lawsuits against the club alleging they didn't do enough to stop the incident from occurring.
"I asked all of these individuals if the individual that came upon stage two nights ago, Nathan Gale, was the same individual who tried to get on stage when they were playing at a bar in Cincinnati called Bogart's. They all thought for a while and stated they cannot be sure it was the same individual, however Mr [Aaron] Barnes [Damageplan sound technician] stated that Nathan Gale resembles the individual that tried to get upon the stage" - Summary #64
"The Carons advised that on April 4th , 2004, they were attending a concert at Bogart's in Cincinnati. The same band [Damageplan] was playing on that particular evening. Within 30 seconds of the band taking the stage, a male/white disrupted the show by running on stage and knocking over speakers and generally causing havoc. The Carons noted that the subject on that night matched the same description of the individual who jumped on stage and started shooting here on this particular night" - Summary #46
"Detective Heinlein related, Nathan Gale was listed as a suspect who damaged equipment onstage during a Damageplan concert, which was performed on April 5th, 2004, at Bogart's, which is located at 2621 Vine Street in Cincinnati, OH."
I'm not going to go into this Bogart's gig because there is not much information to go on, other than what is already shown above. But I will point out the fact that Aaron Barnes [Damageplan sound technician] stated, according to the above quote, that Gale resembled the person who got on stage at the Bogart's gig just a few months before. This same Aaron Barnes had a face to face encounter with Gale [who was asking where the band members were] just outside the band's bus immediately before he snuck into the club and jumped on the stage shooting people [I include the exact quote from the report regarding this later in the blog]. This is just another, in a long list of notable details, that makes it hard to buy that this event occurred the way we were told. It's also very good bait for people to conjecture that the Bogart's gig was a "drill" of sorts.
"Brooks [Damageplan stage tech] said that the tour they were on actually ended in Boston 2 days ago and they played Alrosa Villa just to get some extra money..." - Summary #33
Sounds like this show was added kinda last minute. Who booked it?
"Mr Carpenter [security for Alrosa Villa the night of the shootings] approached this individual and informed him that he could not park his vehicle in its present location...the male then proceeded to park along the left side of a sign for the Alrosa Villa...Mr Carpenter again approached this person and instructed him to move his vehicle as this parking area was also restricted...the male without arguing drove his vehicle...into a parking lot of a nearby business...As the male neared the front east parking lot, Mr Carpenter approached this individual and asked if he was alright..."yes sir, sorry about that."...at one point [about an hour later] Mr Carpenter's brother, Daniel Sheets, who had also been working security for this business place, had approached this subject [who was milling about outside] Mr Sheets had asked this person what he was waiting for. "I'm waiting for the main act." Summary #37
"Mr Sheets walks the lot...While he was there he spoke to a person who he described as a kid [Nathan Gale] who asked him who's playing...Mr sheets stated this kid stated that all he wanted to do was see Damageplan...Mr Sheets claimed that he saw this same person shortly thereafter driving a red Pontiac Grand Am [the car Nathan drove that night]..and park his car, blocking the side door of the bar...he told this kid to move his car and the kid then parked his car by the front Alrosa Villa's sign in the front of the bar. This kid was also told to move from that location...Mr Sheets claimed he saw the same male walking into the woods from the front area of the front door, North of the bar...Mr Sheets claimed that he has a brother who also works parking lot security named Mitch Carpenter. Mr Sheets talked to his brother after the shooting had occurred and they both realized it was the same kid in the red Pontiac that had done this shooting." - Summary #26
The first odd thing about the above statements is that Mitch Carpenter and Daniel Sheets claim to be brothers, but have different last names. Obviously they could be step brothers or one of them may have simply changed their last name. Not very common, but ok.
In Mitch Carpenter's recap, he explains to investigators how he told Gale to move his car twice. He doesn't mention anything about his brother being present at that point. It isn't until an HOUR LATER that he says his brother approached Gale asking him what he was waiting for. The response was "I'm waiting for the main act." [this quote was used by the media on some reports]
Daniel Sheets doesn't mention anything about his brother being present while he tells a similar story his brother told about asking Gale to move his car twice - only Daniel keeps calling Gale a "kid" for some reason [nobody else in this report calls him that, and Gale had noticeable facial hair/scruff in the autopsy photos]. Daniel also basically reverses the timeline. He says he saw Gale driving AFTER having his verbal interaction with him, THEN told him to move twice.
Why are they both basically telling the same story, but one has the timeline reversed? Neither mentions the other was present when they each individually told Gale to move, and why does Daniel call him a "kid?" Mainstream media painted him out to be some kind of gigantic crazed monster!
Mr Sheet's comment about Gale going into the woods is interesting as well, considering that police detained a man who was hiding out by the train tracks outside the club, who was later determined to be there out of curiosity alone, and let go. In fact, there is a witness account, which I did not include in this blog, which mentions that the individual hiding out by the tracks was spotted in the club earlier in the evening. Gale was spotted outside the front of the club by a witness as early as 830PM. [if his plan was to sneak in just before Damageplan was going to play, he wasn't being too smart by standing RIGHT in front of the venue looking sketchy early in the evening] We also have a member of club security mentioning Gale went outside into the woods at some point. Was Gale the man hiding out by the tracks? Was the unidentified man hiding out by the tracks Gale's accomplice? I don't recall the media considering any of this information. Did anyone actually READ this entire report, or were they just too busy interviewing random people to try and show how "crazy" Nate was?
Mitch claims he saw Gale hop the fence to get into the club, and immediately began pursuing him. So why does his brother Daniel say in his above statement that the two of them only realized AFTER the shooting that it was "the same kid in the red Pontiac" who carried out the shootings? Mitch already knew, because he saw Gale hop the fence and was chasing him into the club right before he started shooting people!
"Michael [Colopy, witness] recalled that when he and his 2 friends went inside the club at 8:30PM, he had observed the suspect standing by the front entrance of the club alone." - Summary #41
"Mr Clark is employed by Nextel communications and was present with his co-worker working inside a Nextel Transmitting tower compound installing computer equipment...located adjacent to the southwest corner of the parking lot for 5055 Sinclair Road [Alrosa Villa]...he and his co-worker had arrived at this location at approximately 10:00PM....Shortly after their arrival [they were] approached by 2 security persons from Alrosa Villa...These persons suggested that Mark Clark move their vehicles away from the compound area due to a large crowd that would be exiting from the Alrosa Villa in about an hour." - Summary #37, page 6
First of all, why are these Nextel employees rolling up at 10PM during a concert, which was probably larger than this club typically has, in order to install computer equipment? Doesn't really sound like the type of emergency which required immediate attention during off hours. And why were they driving 2 vehicles? Doesn't 1 vehicle have enough shit in it to install their equipment? How much equipment did they need to install?
The Nextel employees were told to move their vehicles around the same time an announcement was made INSIDE the club advising that someone needs to move their vehicles. What are the odds that the Nextel vehicles, and the vehicles the club announcement was referring to, were the SAME vehicles? Pretty likely. I mean how many vehicles just rolled up and decided to block up the parking lot just before Damageplan played? If the Nextel employees were approached by the Alrosa Villa crew, they would not need to announce anything inside the club, because they already knew who owned the vehicles! Not to mention, the vehicles woulda had NEXTEL logos on the side of them!
"Mr Barnes [Damageplan Sound Technician] stated at approximately 10:15PM, the show was getting ready to start. At this time he exited the tour bus, turned around and locked the door to the bus. As he turned to enter the Alrosa Villa from the back door, a male/white with a shaved head with a large framed body, seemed very hyped up, asked him if Dime and Vinny were already inside or were they still on the bus. Mr Barnes stated he told this individual "yes" they were inside and the suspect said "see you inside," turned and left. This individual was later identified as Nathan Gale."
[Note: the official report states the first 911 call made after shooting began was at 10:18pm]
If you recall, this is the same Mr Barnes who stated in an earlier quote that he thought Nathan "resembles the individual that tried to get upon the stage" at the Bogart's gig. This odd interaction between the two by the band's bus just before Damageplan started seems to be recounted by Nathan himself to a couple witnesses just after he enters the club. This statement will be mentioned later in this blog. But take note of the time this occurred: 10:15PM
"Mr Paluska [Damageplan manager, bass tech] related the show usually starts around 10:15, but however on this evening they were running a little late and it started at approximately 10:30PM" - Summary #54
NOTE - "ON THIS EVENING THEY WERE RUNNING A LITTLE LATE"
"He [Mr Blankenship, witness] added that he wasn't sure if it was important or not, but the show had been POSTPONED earlier because of 2 vehicles that were parked where they shouldn't have been...and they made an announcement over the loudspeakers of the club for the owners to move these vehicles." Summary #42
NOTE - "THE SHOW HAD BEEN POSTPONED EARLIER BECAUSE OF 2 VEHICLES."
"He [Mr Harden, witness] stated the announcement [over the PA] claimed they were going to tow these trucks if they weren't moved" - Summary #43
NOTE - "THESE TRUCKS."
Clearly, 2 trucks rolled up [and parked in a bad spot apparently] right about the time Damageplan was preparing to play and Gale was preparing to enter the club. One Nextel employee said that they were approached to move their vehicles shortly after arriving. They got there around 10pm, so "shortly after" would have been about the same time everyone was hearing an announcement for 2 trucks to be moved over the PA inside the venue, or be towed [even though 2 employees already approached the Nextel employees who owned them?]. According to witness testimony, this was DELAYING the start of the show. The Nextel trucks had to have been the same ones referred to by the PA loudspeaker in the club. I mean, unless 2 OTHER trucks rolled up to the club just after 10pm and also parked in an unauthorized spot and delayed the show, even though the club was only at about half capacity that night and there shoulda been plenty of authorized parking left!
Given the questionable testimonies of the "brothers" who worked the lot that night, and the fact that the timing of the Nextel worker's appearance disrupted/delayed the starting of Damageplan's set just about the same time Gale was preparing to sneak in - it seems plausible that this parking business was all a diversion created to help Gale get into the club, or perhaps was a signal to let him know that his assassination mission is to begin.
"The band got upon the stage and Pat, the lead singer [for Damageplan] told the audience that this is just a rock and roll jam, just everybody stay cool. Mr Harding [witness] remembers the next thing he remembered, he heard popping and thought the speakers were blowing" Summary #40
Many witnesses made similar statements about "popping" sounds, like firecrackers. I don't know what a Berretta [Nathan's weapon] sounds like, but it is a hand gun which, I don't know if it has the capability to emit the type of RAPID BLAST sounds similar to a series of firecrackers. Perhaps these noises WERE initially coming from the speakers? Perhaps people not used to the sound of such a gun fired in such a rapid manner might confuse them for firecrackers. Nonetheless, it is noteworthy that many witnesses heard a popping sound which was not immediately identifiable as "gun fire."
"Prior to the main act taking the stage, Mr Carpenter [security]...observed the male who he had told twice [again, he's stating HE told this to Nathan, not he AND his brother] to remove his car from the parking lot, now standing next to the wooden privacy fence..this subject grabbed a hold of the top portion of the fence, then proceeded to pull himself up and over the wooden fence, thereby gaining access into the enclosed patio area...Once inside the patio area, the subject proceeded to walk southbound towards the building where he found an unsecured door. At this doorway, the subject entered the club. Mr Carpenter began to follow the subject into the nightclub."" Summary #37
"Her [Allison Henthorn, witness] brother called at 10:00PM while she was still outside [the venue]. She observed a male/white trying to scale a privacy fence on the north side of the club...after encouragement from the crowd of people and with some help from them, this person finally made it over the fence. A security guard approached this subject [Nathan Gale] saying "no, no, no way." this person [Nathan] responded by saying "what's up?" and ran by the security guard and entered the club." - Summary #30
The above are the only 2 eyewitness accounts from OUTSIDE the club in this report describing Nathan hopping the 6' or so fence to get into the patio area. Witness Allison Henthorn states she saw Nathan jump the fence at 10PM. If her brother called her at that time, her phone would confirm this, even if her memory was off. Now if you recall an earlier quote, Mr Barnes [Damageplan technician] stated he had his interaction with Nathan BEHIND the venue by the band's bus at 10:15PM. How could Nathan have been outside the venue at 10:15 by the band's bus if someone saw him go into the venue at 10PM, and he obviously never came back out alive? In another earlier quote, Mr Paluska [Damageplan manager/bass tech] stated the band normally starts at 10:15PM. Damageplan was at the end of a tour at this point, so the difference between 10, 10:15PM, and 10:30PM were critical differences in the minds of the staff, who are all well aware of their routine every night. Perhaps Ms Henthorn was on the phone for 15 minutes before seeing Gale enter the club, but it really doesn't sound like it judging from her account above. Not to mention the fact that Mr Barnes states he was having a face to face encounter with Nathan at that time. This is also when the headliner was supposed to be starting, so why would she want to be on the phone for 15 minutes at that point?
Ms Henthorn states "this person FINALLY made it over the fence." That indicates to me that it took him some time to get over it. What was MR Carpenter doing while Nathan was struggling to get over the fence and people were cheering him on? Doesn't sound like he was very eager to stop him, based on these eyewitness accounts. Mr Carpenter makes it pretty clear that he saw Nathan put his hands right up on that fence and hop over, as if he was a gymnast. Something isn't adding up here.
This jumping of the 6' fence could not have been an easy task for Nathan given his weight, size, the fact he was being watched, and the urgency of his mission. Even with his military training, this probably wasn't a very graciously executed physical feat. [he was, after all written up for being "grossly" overweight - he was slim and trim when he completed boot camp, but all of this extra weight was gained AFTER he completed boot camp and was discharged. This would have greatly affected his physical coordination] We also need to consider that he had all these rounds of ammunition, a gun, a knife, his chain wallet, his very thick glasses, his baseball hat - these are all items he still had on his person by the time he got to the stage. Before we get into any more detail, just try to imagine all of these items remaining on Nathan's person while he hastily scales this fence, flops on the ground in the patio area, and reaches the stage while being pursued by multiple security guards and having already been spotted by who knows how many witnesses. Hard to imagine he didn't drop one of these items or at least fumble for them at anytime during this period. Sure, he passed boot camp, but it's not like he was an ex "Green Beret" or anything.
How did Mr Carpenter see Nathan enter the club if he was on the other side of a 6' fence? And if he did, why did he not comment on the interactions Nathan had with other people on the way there? [including a conversation, which we will look at in a moment] Mr Carpenter already told Nathan to move his car a couple times, and his brother also approached Nathan for looking suspicious [and also told Nathan to move his car twice, according to his own testimony!]. Nathan would have stood out to security at this point, how would he have all this time to struggle over the fence? Why does Mr Carpenter's account have the gunman jumping over the fence fairly quickly and bolting DIRECTLY into the bar, seemingly without incident on the way?
We know at LEAST 2 security guards are aware Nathan jumped the fence, and there's a CROWD of people who saw it. Security guard gets right in Nathan's face, and as if it was some sort of magic word, gets by the guard by saying "what's up?" Nathan may have been big and scary looking but it's hard to believe he simply walked right past security after all of this mess.
"She [Penny Reed, witness] saw a male/white who she described as husky wearing a white hoodie and the 70s style type sunglasses and a jacket over top. She thought this person as trying to get into the concert for free because when she saw this male coming over the fence of the patio, she started hollering out "fugitive fugitive..." Ms Reed watched as the security guard went after this white/male and they enter into the bar area." - Summary #45
"Ms Brenstuhl [witness] indicated she and her daughter...were sitting outside on the patio...Approximately 2 tables away she observed 2 males sitting drinking beer when another male came up to them...this male that had just walked up, told the 2 males he had just been at Damageplan trailer and tried to get in by banging on the door..the male indicated the band knows him by name and would want him there. The roadie told the male to "fuck off" and then shut the door. The male said he then left...shortly after the male said this, he then walked inside as Damageplan began to play...Ms Brestuhl could not be positive if this was the same man who had shot the four individuals inside and was later identified as Nathan Gale...In talking with Laura Brenstuhl, she indicated it was the same male she had seen outside talking with the 2 males that she had observed onstage with the handgun " - Summary #36
We have Ms Reed claiming she hollered "fugitive!" when she saw Nathan jump the fence. We get the sense she was being sarcastic and humorous about the whole thing, which makes you wonder if there really WAS a crowd helping him get in. If Ms Reed thought the whole thing was so amusing, she probably wasn't the only one! Her statements about his appearance are a bit off, but many witnesses saw different colors when recounting the color of Nathan's gun and his clothing. It was dark and clubs are dimly lit - so the "70s style type glasses" might be explained away somewhat reasonably this way.
Ms Brenstuhl claims she saw Nathan start up a conversation with a couple guys once over the fence. What? How did he have the time, or the will to stop and chat at that point? We know Nathan was real "crazy" and all that, but we also keep hearing how "determined" he was to attack Dimebag. Doesn't really sound like the actions of someone with a sense of urgency to kill. He's got security after him and he's got a guitar player on stage to shoot! Ms Brenstuhl couldn't have made this up because it matches up with an earlier account given by Mr Barnes [Damageplan sound technician] who claimed Nathan approached him at about 10:15PM [which would not have occurred yet according to Ms Henthorn's account because she saw him jump the fence at 10]. Mr Barnes's story had him being a bit short, but polite to Nathan. The above account is basically the same story, but portrays Mr Barns as not being not so polite to Nathan, indicated by the "fuck off" statement. In any case, if this story is true, it is the only detailed insight we have into Nathan's mind just before approaching the stage to execute Dimebag Darrell. It manages to make Nathan look like a crazy fan, in pretty graphic detail [one motive why it may have been coerced by investigators]. Given that Ms Brenstuhl initially stated she wasn't sure if it was Nathan, then changed her mind, further indicates that some coercion COULD have occurred. Whatever the case, we've got a whole lot of problems here with timeline and details.
"Mr Gallagher [witness] said that the band Damageplan had just come out on stage and begun playing when a stage tech walked up to the microphone, which was being used by the guitar player, "Dimebag Darrell."...he observed a man [Nathan Gale] wearing a Blue Jackets jersey coming from the left side of the stage towards the middle of the stage then stopped after seeing the stage tech and walked back...the stage tech finished working on the microphone then the male wearing the Blue Jackets jersey walked directly towards Dimebag, put both hands on the handgun and shot him..."
"Just after the show started, Mr Paluska [Damageplan manager, stand in bass tech] observed a big guy male/white, had pushed his way upon the stage very aggressively...Mr Paluska related he grabbed the guy and this individual turned around and shot him.
"Mr Abbott [Vinny "Vince," brother of Dimebag, Drummer of Damageplan] stated that they had just started to play when he observed the suspect, Nathan Gale, proceed across the stage from his right to left...Mr Gale approached Darrell Abbott. placing Mr Abbott in a headlock and then began shooting Mr Abbott in the head with a handgun..."
"John Brooks stated that he was standing behind the cabinets on the right side of the stage and he believed the band had already been playing 40-45 minutes and it was near the end of the set when he saw a guy who went running across the stage and stopped near the drum risers..he thought that it was a fan wanting to get a set of drumsticks...he went running around the cabinets and that's when he saw this man shoot the guitar player in the back of the head."
"Mr Kakaha stated he is the bassist of the band and was standing on the right front corner of the stage next to the singer, Paul Lachman. It was approximately 10:15PM and they were in the process of playing their first song. The suspect came from behind him while he was on the stage and went straight to the guitar player...he looked over to Dimebag and the suspect looked like he was hugging him, then turned to the side and that's when he saw the gun aimed at his head....Mr Kakaha stated he ran back behind his bass amps and ran out the back door towards his tour bus."
"When the band started to play, he did not see the suspect, Nathan Gale, get on stage. He did however see the individual walk across the left side of the stage...across to Dimebag, the guitar player like he was on a mission...Mr [Aaron] Barnes stated that while he [Nathan] was reloading, he kept looking around as if he was looking for someone else in particular"
"Mr Lachman stated he started singing and was looking down into the crowd and did not see the shooter approach the stage...he heard several shots, looked over at Dimebag, and saw the suspect...shooting at Dimebag. At this time, Mr Lachman stated he jumped off the stage and looked back and saw Jeff Thompson who is security for the band lying on the stage...he was still holding the microphone and started yelling for someone to call 911 and then he ran outside with the house security."
The above quotes give us a pretty clear window into what occurred in those brief moments just before Darrell was attacked. Let's match this up with the pictures at the beginning of this section [I have blown them up above and made some notes to illustrate the points I am about to make. Scroll to the beginning of this section to see the full images from which they were edited]. These were some of the last pictures taken of Damageplan just before the shooting broke out. In the first 2 pictures, you can make out the mic stand in front of Dimebag Darrell. The last picture shows Dimebag with his BACK to the audience and the mic stand is now GONE. To give perspective here, the mic stand was placed in front of Vinnie's LEFT kick drum, from the perspective of the photographer. It's hard to make out, but it is there if you look closely. Someone moved that mic stand just before Nathan Gale attacked Dimebag. First question we need to ask is, who moved that mic stand and why? Keep this in mind while we continue.
Mr Gallagher relates above that Nathan Gale actually got onstage, then HESITATED. Wait a minute. He had all kinds of security after him and was all intent and "on a mission" to kill Dimebag and he...hesitated on stage? He gets to the MIDDLE of the stage, right in front of Vinnie Paul's drums! [this is echoed in Mr Brook's statement, so Mr Gallagher was not the only one who saw this] Then Nathan turns around and backtracks to the side of the stage. Why does he do this? Because a "STAGE TECH" walks out onto the stage and starts messing with Dimebag's microphone. Well it seems we now know how that microphone stand got moved don't we? Why would they set up a mic in front of Dimebag [who's not the singer in the band] only to have a stage tech immediately go out on the first song and move it out of the way? And how did Nathan have time to hesitate like this, with security after him? Watch the video. Nathan walks up there across the stage and security just barrels on there after him and immediately start tackling him. Why didn't they do that earlier? They didn't see him get on stage in front of the drums, go back to the side, then get back onstage?
Most people think Dimebag was the first person shot that night, but Damageplan's manager Mr Paluska relates above how he saw Nathan get on stage and got shot trying to stop him. So not only did Nathan hesitate on stage, he was delayed by having to deal with Mr Paluska. Again, where is security? Mr Paluska isn't even working security, and HE SAW Gale get on stage and tried to stop him! Somehow, Gale has time to get on stage, get off, get back on, shoot someone, than just run right at Dimebag, who's back is conveniently to the crowd at this point early into the first song. The singer and the bass player didn't see or hear Mr Paluska get shot RIGHT behind them on stage?
The camera footage of this event was taken by Dimebag's camera which was sitting on top of the bass players gear, stage right to Vinny Paul's kick drum. Somehow, just before Nathan Gale approaches the stage, everyone on stage disappears! The singer and the bass player go off to the front right side, and Dimebag disappears off to the left and is standing right in front of his amp, as pictured in the 3rd photo at the top of this section - where the mic stand which was in front of him moments before is now gone. It's almost as if the "red sea just parts" for Nathan Gale to do his deed. Why was Dimebag standing directly in front of his amp with his back to the crowd seconds into the first song? Was there something wrong with his amp? Was this related to the "popping noises" people heard coming out of the speakers? Was his amp sabotaged to distract him so that Nathan would more easily approach and kill him? This is a valid question nobody has asked. Why? Because "oh my god, I cant ask that question people might think I am crazy!"
The above image is a still taken directly from the footage. We see Nathan approach the stage very rapidly, he does NOT turn around [this footage can be found easily online], pulls his gun right out, and holds it with 2 hands while it is pointed directly where we think Dimebag stands [but we can't actually see him because he's outside camera view] From the above accounts, we know Nathan got Dimebag in some sort of headlock. Why did Nathan have 2 hands on the gun, pointed at Darrell, and then grab him in a headlock? Why didn't he just start shooting? This means another slight hesitation had to occur, and there was a couple witnesses who said they saw Darrell turn around and gaze at Nathan for a split second just before he was shot. This guy is an ex marine, trained to kill. Why did he hesitate? What was the purpose of this headlock? Is this what "crazy people" do? If anything, he risked shooting himself accidentally by doing this. I'm having a hard time connecting Nathan Gale's "killer instinct" with all of these oddball details that seem to just magically work in his favor time and time again here.
John Brook's recollection above has the shooting starting near the end of Damageplan's set - but I think it is important to consider that he was shot multiple times and was held hostage just a few hours before this interview was conducted - so I imagine he was still in quite a bit of shock recounting this event.
"Nobody directed me anywhere once I entered the door....The suspect [Nathan Gale] had not seen me and I saw that I could move closer to him along the back of the stage. I moved as quickly as I could in a half crouched position toward the suspect..." Tape recorded statement, Officer James Niggemeyer
The still photo above was taken from the "alleged footage" from Dimebag Darrell's camera, which was mentioned earlier. This footage is often seen as "grainy" or otherwise distorted. But the original footage is quite clear, and as of this writing can be seen very well using this link https://www.10tv.com/article/survivors-recall-events-alrosa-villa-shooting. In this presentation we can clearly see James Niggemeyer rush out onto the stage with what seems like 2 or 3 security guards just waving their hands and yelling and practically rolling out a red carpet for officer Niggemeyer directing him to where Nathan Gale is holding his hostage on the other side of the stage. But if this is real footage, Nathan was already dead at that point, as this would have been after he had already shot him. Let's recap what Niggemeyer said in the report.
He says "nobody directed me anywhere once I entered the door." Look at the picture above. You can see the guy with the ponytail POINTING towards where Nathan is holding a hostage! He said he moved "along the back of the stage" so that Nathan would not see him. In the above video, he barrels out right in the MIDDLE of the stage in FRONT of those drums! He says he was in a "half crouched position." Does he look "half crouched" in the above still? Officer Niggemeyer had to be very careful not to be seen, as Nathan and his hostage were facing the crowd. If Niggemeyer approached from the middle or front of the stage, he'd have been seen. He had to approach from BEHIND slightly. So the way this footage was presented in the above linked story was misleading for affect or staged.
"I backed up around this speaker here. And came around this direction between this body and I believe it was the equipment...I was making sure that he didn't get back up...I saw 2 officers run up in front of me...between me and the suspect...I never made it to the suspect...officer Crum came up from my back and got a hold of my arm...we turned around and walked straight back out the door...we directly made a straight line out the door."
In the above quote, Niggemeyer describes the path he walked towards Gale which is reflected in the dotted lines he added to the map above. He then states 2 officers came up in front of him, and an officer Crum came up behind and "got a hold of my arm." Ok, now what does this mean exactly? Does this mean officer Crum grabbed the shotgun? That was what I thought when I first read this. As-in "grabbed my side-arm/Disarmed me" That would make sense, because Niggemeyer would be in shock and the suspect was dead. This is a very serious moment, because an officer just killed a civilian! Nonetheless, there's the possibility officer Crum grabbed his actual arm, as in to pull him away from where he was walking - which seems logical too in a way, but not as logical as taking the shotgun when you really think about it. What does this report say?
"Sargeant Lessberg stated that officer Ricky Crum was the officer involved in the shooting and that officer James Niggemeyer had taken the shotgun Officer Crum had used in the shooting. Seargent Leesburg stated that the shotgun was secured in the trunk of a nearby cruiser. Officer Crum was reportedly removed from the shooting scene...It was later determined that officer Niggemeyer was the officer involved in the shooting and it was officer Crum that secured the shotgun." [Summary 70, page 2]
I'm sure it was a very chaotic scene after the shooting was concluded, but how in the hell did Sergeant Leesberg manage to mix up who shot Gale? On one hand, one could say "hey go easy, how good a job would YOU do under such pressure pal?" Another way to look at this is "that's a pretty extreme mix-up. Did they just decide to change the story?" This is another one of those situations where our "pride in our law enforcement" can get the better of us. Yes, we should respect our law enforcement, who protect the public. But they are not immune to mistakes or corruption! So when it comes to a crime scene, we MUST remain objective and consider anything that is possible. Not just what we "feel ok with." Anyway, let's give Sargeant Leesberg a free pass here and just assume he mixed up his facts during a very chaotic scene. But we have a very big problem, because now we have it confirmed that Officer Crum had "taken the shotgun" officer Niggemeyer had used in the shooting. So when Officer Niggemeyer stated in his recap that "officer Crum came up from my back and got a hold of my arm," he wasn't talking about his ACTUAL ARM he was talking about his weapon. Therefore, the footage above seems to be an inaccurate re-enactment, as Niggemeyer's gun was taken from him before he walked back over in front of Dimebag's camera, which was still allegedly rolling apparently. But there he is, directly in front of the camera, holding that shotgun like Sylvester Stallone - just having took out the enemy and breathing a sigh of relief...notice how many of these "actors" seem to play to the camera, but nobody ever looks directly at it!
As shocking as it seems, I don't really see how this footage could be 100% real because it directly contradicts the narrative in certain key ways, as I have shown above using the official materials handed to the public. It also has the feel of a carefully edited and directed piece of footage. As if certain "scenes" were played out for the camera. Especially the scene where Gale storms the stage. My opinion is that the footage was staged, possibly mixed in with some of the actual footage, and handed to the public in order to control our perception of this event. The raw footage was redacted from this report (or never included to begin with) because it either doesn't exist, or reveals certain details police investigators did not want the public to see.
The biggest question that keeps coming up when it comes to this event is "why?" I believe in this blog I have shown that one reason this event made so little sense is because the public was lied to, or given incomplete information, regarding how it actually occurred. How are we ever going to learn from these seemingly senseless acts of violence against our fellow man? If our heroes and loved one's humiliating deaths have not taught us anything, we'd better start looking a little closer. Mass shootings are on the rise, and if we aren't going to bother questioning the popular media narrative, we might as well just hand our guns over to Uncle Sam right now and beg for more of our rights to be taken away for our own protection, because we just can't seem to stop shooting each other for no goddamned reason.
HOW CAN I VIEW THE OFFICIAL REPORT MYSELF?
I have been asked this question by some readers, so here is my general response to the question: You should have no problem obtaining the official report by contacting the Public Records Unit of Columbus, OH directly via their website. I have no more special access or privileges than anyone else reading this. The cost is minimal. Please do the work yourself, it is very educational and can be empowering. If for some reason you are having trouble obtaining it, feel free to send me an email and I would be happy to do what I can within legal boundaries.
CLICK HERE for a condensed video version of this blog.
You might also be interested in another blog series I've been doing, Bathory and the Scandinavian Metal Attack
Here are some other popular blogs I have done, click to read.
This blog was researched, written, and maintained by 1 person. If you enjoyed it and would like to encourage more of them, donations of any amount can be made by clicking the PayPal powered button below. If you don't like pressing strange buttons online, you can simply PayPal donations directly using the email firstname.lastname@example.org.