Mary Louise Thompson

In the mid 1990's, in Eugene Oregon, Mary Louise Thompson was looked upon by some as maybe a bit obsessed, some looked at her a little more than odd, but it is not likely that anyone thought she was dangerous.  Everyone would be proven wrong by 1995. Little did they know that the woman dubbed "Gang Mom" for all the campaigning she did against them was running one herself right out of her home.

Mary Louise Thompson was a local mother who's son had obviously had issues although to the extent in which people knew what those issues were around 1994, I am unsure.  Mary Louise made it her mission to talk to parents, and police and kids all about the dangers of gangs.  She was even the leader of a community group that preached about it.  For the most part it seems that other parents, and even the police did not take her completely serious because there really did not seem to be a gang problem in Eugene Oregon.  They would later discover that Mary Thompson was right... there was a gang problem in Eugene... and she was their leader.

An 18 year old boy, Aaron Iturra, had gone around town with Mary Louise helping her with her "lectures" and meetings.  He was well respected around town and thought to be a very nice young man.  Reports vary on whether he had a past gang association, which gave him a true voice in this "fight," whether he was part of Mary Louise's current "gang" or whether he really knew a lot of what was going on.  However, it seems as if it would be almost impossible for him not to at the very least know what was going on in the Thompson household, if not a current member of her gang.  

In July of 1994 Mary Louise's sixteen year old son, Beau Flynn was released from a juvenile facility.  Beau had been trouble.  At the age of thirteen he himself was in a gang and was in the business of selling guns.  He was sent to the facility after he had held a gun to police officer.  Whether Mary Louise had been open about this or not was unclear in my research.  But, it makes sense that she would have been.  While Beau was gone she had made her home what she called a "safe haven" for other kids and had convinced others that she knew the "lingo" and the ways of the gangs, through her research and likely her experiences with her son.  

On September 13, 1994 Beau and Aaron were out and about when they apparently ran into someone at a convenient store.  Beau got into a fight with another young boy and ended up cutting (or stabbing, it was unclear) him a knife.  It was later said that this was "payback" for the other boy "ratting" on Beau and causing him to go to the juvenile facility, but that excuse seems unlikely.  Both Beau and Aaron were arrested the following day because of the incident.  Aaron's mother would later say that Mary Louise had called her house angry saying that she had put Aaron in charge of looking after Beau to keep him out of trouble.  Aaron's mother would find this conversation very odd. 

Exactly what Aaron shared with officers after his arrest is just one more thing in this story that seems unclear.  Some reports say that he admitted to seeing Beau stab the other teen and was prepared to testify against him.  Other reports say that while Aaron admitted to seeing Beau have a knife at some point he never admitted to seeing or witnesses anything.  In fact, the television show I watched stated that they were to return to court on October 5th, but the articles that I came across stated that none of the witnesses at the convenient store had, or were willing to identify Beau and so the case fell apart.  

Whether Aaron was going to testify or not, truly does not matter because on October 3, 1994 two other teens would sneak into his home and shoot Aaron while he was asleep in bed.  The police were stumped.  Nothing like this had happened before.  As usually is the case they started interviewing those closest to the victim and made their way to Mary Louise.  She would tell investigators that the day before the shooting a strange man had come to her door looking for Aaron and she was convinced it was a gang member of some kind.  I mean, she should know, her life had become all about being able to spot them.  The supposed stranger had only told Mary Louise his first name and had left, but she did not know who he was.  

While investigators were trying to follow up with Mary Louise's story and failing they got a tip about two teenagers bragging about committing the murder.  The teens, seventeen year old James Elstad and eighteen year old Joseph Brown were soon arrested.  Not surprisingly both Elstad and Brown also had close ties to Mary Louise.  As investigators dug deeper they were convinced that Beau Flynn had something to do with the two teens murdering Aaron Iturra but they had nothing to prove it and neither of the other two boys were saying much at first.  

Investigators decided in the early part of January of 1995 to tap the Thompson phone.  Beau had gotten back in trouble... again... and it was thought that a wire tape on the phone would garner some information concerning Aaron's murder.  At this point they still believed that Beau was likely behind Aaron's murder considering he looked to have a motive.  What investigators soon learned through the wire taps was it was not Beau who had been behind Aaron's murder, but it had been Mary Louise who had ordered the "hit" on Aaron.  That is when they also learned that Mary Louise happened to know so much about gangs not because her son had been involved in one, but because she was running one from her home.  During the month that they tapped the Thompson home they recorded over 1,800 phone calls, many which dealt with gang activity.  The gang went by the name 74 Hoover Crips.

Investigators got Elstad and Brown to admit to the gang activity and that Mary Louise had ordered them to murder Aaron.  Some reports say that they were prepared to testify against her, while others say they had planned to but then backed out.  Whether either of the teens actually did testify is unclear.  For their parts, Elstad and Brown pled guilty.  Elstad received a fifteen year sentence while Brown was sentenced to ten.  

In February of 1995 Mary Louise Thompson was arrested and charged with aggravated murder.  Investigators had learned that not only had she ordered the boys to to commit the murder she had helped them in getting rid of the gun they used.  She had driven them near the river so the gun could be thrown in. It did not go far however as it was found rather quickly by a passerby.  She was additionally charged with six counts of hindering a prosecution and one count of murder.  She was found guilty on all charges and received a twenty five year sentence.  According to the Oregon DOC her earliest chance at release is in March of 2021.  However, that has not stopped her from trying to be released early.  Apparently Oregon passed a law a few years ago in which they were lower sentences of non violent offenders in order to clear up the jail population. Through her lawyers Mary Louise tried to take advantage of this law and have her sentence reduced.  Her efforts failed.

Mary Louise was the only person from this story that I could find on the Department of Corrections website.  However, I pretty much determined that they do not keep a lot of information on that site it seems.  The fact that neither Brown or Elstad was on there was of no consequence as I could not determine that they have gotten into more trouble since this time and have they have long since served their sentences for this crime.  However, I found several more reports and articles on Beau Flynn.

It appears that Beau Flynn, cannot or does not want to live outside prison walls, despite the fact that at the current time I cannot find a record of him in an Oregon prison.  As I stated above he had entered a juvenile facility at the age of thirteen and at sixteen, after only being out for two months committed another crime.  I read information that at the time Mary Louise was convicted Beau was back in a juvenile facility.  I am going to gander to guess he was likely there until he was eighteen or older and I can say that by July of 2000 when he was arrested with a friend, Steven Weavill, he had at least already garnered a felony as he was arrested initially for possession of a firearm by a felon and on a parole violation.  Weavill was charged with the murder of eighteen year old Casey Jo Stafek.  Weavill would receive a life sentence and shows no release date on the DOC website.

From all of the things I can piece together while Beau had been arrested for the parole violation he was eventually convicted of hindering prosecution and threatening a witness pertaining to the Stafek case.  To be fair there is no indication that he was ever charged in that murder.  I was not able to determine how much time he was given in those convictions, but, I found a website called Inmate Connections which is a "pen pal" sort of site for inmates obviously.  On that site Beau had a profile that stated that he was due for release in April of 2009 on a charge of firearm possession. However, reading his bio he states that he had been inside since 2000 which leads back to this arrest.  While it does not appear that he lied in the profile it does look as if he had failed to tell the whole story, surprise, surprise. Then I found an article from November of 2012 relating to Beau.  The article was mainly about the fact that once again Beau was arrested outside a Lane County (Eugene), Oregon strip mall in which a bank was located.  As officers approached him he attempted to flee and the officers threw a flash bang grenade.   Officers would later say they were convinced that Beau was "casing" the bank and planning a robbery.  Now, I am unsure if I believe this part.  I am not defending Beau in any way what so ever because the article gave even more information on his criminal background. Apparently he had been convicted again in 2009 (presumably a few months after his release) and given a sentence of three years for once again being in the possession of a firearm and possessing body armor.  Upon his release he was barred from entering Lane County.  He was also rumored to be the leader of a gang called the Westside Prison Gang.  He had just been released from that stint in prison two months prior to this arrest in November of 2012.  It is likely the officers were looking out and about for him anyway because Beau does not seem to be the brightest bulb in the box and it seems within a few months of his release from prison he has done something new.  I also do not doubt that he likely ran from the police as they approached him outside the strip mall, nor do I doubt their claims that he was in possession once again of a gun.  I just kind of doubt he was casing the bank and planning a robbery as that is not his MO and that the officers were looking for a reason to explain better that they released a flash bang grenade in a quite open area.  Let me add, that I do not blame them for doing so but I can totally see there being an uproar and the community wanting a good excuse.  From what I have gathered after that stunt Beau pleaded guilty and in February of 2014 he was sentenced to 30 months in prison of which he had likely served nearly half if he had remained in prison since the arrest, because we all know "Mama" was not available to bail him out.  And yet still he is no where to be found on the DOC in Oregon, which puzzles me.  They obviously only keep records on there of current inmates and nothing from the past or even those on parole apparently.  Even if he served every bit of his 30 month sentence he would have been released in 2015 at some point.  I suppose it is totally possible that he could have changed his ways, or become smarter in his crimes but neither of those things seem to be very realistic.  I even went as far as checking to see if he had died but found nothing on him past the fact he received the 30 months in February of 2014.  There is a part of me that hopes he did turn his life around because if anyone did not seem to have a shot in hell of coming out normal it was this guy and he did not do so well with that most of his life.  Something tells me though that we have not heard the last of him.... or even his mother when she's released in 2021. 

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