Ex Minnesota Hells Angels leader-turned-author a marked man - KMSP-TV

Ex Minnesota Hells Angels leader a marked man after tell-all book

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MINNEAPOLIS (KMSP) -

AUTHOR'S NOTE: Pat Matter is a man I never dreamed I'd get the chance to interview. Most folks who know him, personally or by reputation, will be stunned that he's going in front of a television camera for the first time. But the former leader of Minnesota's Hells Angels has one hell of a story to tell. And he did it with the help of a cop who helped lock him up.

MINNEAPOLIS (KMSP) -- Pat Matter was the undisputed godfather of the Minnesota Hells Angels, ruling over the city's methamphetamine trade for decades from the Angels clubhouse on Washington Avenue. Until 10 years ago, when Matter did the unthinkable. He broke the code, and snitched on his fellow Angels.

Matter is now telling his story with the help of an unlikely coauthor, Chris Omodt, a former Hennepin County deputy who helped put him away.

“Pat would always accuse me of investigating him further, but I wanted to get the facts right,” Omodt said.

The book, Breaking the Code, is hardly light reading. It lays out the drugs, the sex and raw brutality of life in the Hells Angels in vivid detail. But for Matter it came to an end when he was indicted and convicted of distributing cocaine. Looking at a life sentence, he cut a deal. In return for testifying against his fellow Angels, he'd get 7 years taken off his sentence. He did 9 years behind bars.

“It was the hardest thing I ever did,” Matter said. “I just wasn't going to lose my family.”

But Omodt discovered that being a Hells Angel involved a certain amount of bluster and bravado. Like the Filthy Few patch -- a kind of merit badge, for murder.

The godfather and cop alternate chapters from their own perspective. The narrative also tracks the development of a unique friendship, between the con and son of a former sheriff.

“When Pat went to prison he asked me to look after his wife and children,” Omodt said. “I think the greatest reward for a law enforcement officer is to see someone turn his life around. And I truly believe Pat has turned his life around."

Matter's cooperation has come with a price. From all accounts, he's a marked man. The Hells Angels made that clear when they blacked out his face on a clubhouse mural.

“I wrote this to tell my story, not to bash the Hells Angels or law enforcement,” Matter said. “This was to tell my story.”

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