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"When men like us follow rules and cooperate a little bit, well, the world becomes ours."
Joe to Daryl Dixon about his group's rules.[src]

The Claimers are a hostile group of survivors introduced in the episode "Claimed" of Season 4 of AMC's The Walking Dead. They served as the primary antagonistic group for the second half of Season 4.


The Claimers are a small group of rough and hardened survivors. They are a violent, dangerous group of marauders who raid camps and homes for supplies and kill survivors.

The leader of the group, Joe, established some rules to follow so things don't get tense within the group. As Joe puts it, "Going it alone, that ain't an option nowadays. Still it is survival of the fittest. That's a paradox right there." When the members want to mark something as their own they say the word "Claimed." One of the most prominent rules is that lying is strictly forbidden. It is shown that anyone who breaks these rules will be brutally beaten, sometimes to death. The group is generally shown to be close, such as them being vengeful towards Rick who killed their comrade Lou. On the other hand, sometimes things get rough in the group, such as Len choking Tony just so he can take his bed. They have no qualms turning on each other when ordered to do so, such as beating Len to death after he is revealed to be a liar.

Due to their brutal nature, they have no qualms committing heinous crimes such as murder and torture. They are even shown to go as far as rape against women and even children, shown when Dan is about to rape Carl. When the Claimers finally catch Rick on an abandoned road, Joe states that he intends on making Rick watch Daryl be beaten to death and Michonne and Carl be raped. This sadism proves to be the group's downfall, as it allows Rick to fight back and kill Joe. This distracts the other group members, allowing them to be easily subdued.


Nothing is known about the life of Joe's group members before the zombie apocalypse. It is unknown if any of the group members knew each other before the outbreak occurred. It is possible that some or all of the members lived in or near Georgia.


At some point following the outbreak, Joe and his men gradually came together and became a violent, dangerous group of marauders in which they raided abandoned or occupied camps or homes for supplies and killed whoever got in their way or attempted to steal supplies from them. They are also implied to have committed many sexual crimes against women that they came across. In order to prevent hostilities from arising in the group, Joe established a strict set of rules that mainly involved group members claiming whatever supplies or utilities they wanted and thus those supplies and utilities would be theirs alone in order to prevent competitions and fights for resources occurring. Lying was also strictly forbidden in the group and anyone who was caught in a lie or suspected of lying would be beaten to death on Joe's orders.

The Walking Dead: Red Machete

These webisodes depict the lifestyle of the Claimers early on in the apocalypse, in which they scavenge for supplies, raid homes and campsites and kill those who get in their way or attempt to steal from them.

Season 4

The Claimers unknowingly cross paths with Rick Grimes as they raid a house where Rick, his son Carl, and Michonne Hawthorne had been staying. A recovering and weak Rick hides underneath a bed as the Claimers search the house. Tony and Len fight over the bed, and Rick is spotted by Tony, but Tony is choked unconscious by Len before he could say anything. Rick attempts to escape through the bathroom but runs into Lou. Rick strangles and kills Lou, taking his gun and jacket and leaves him to turn, while escaping with Carl and Michonne outside. Once Joe's group finds out that Lou was killed, they begin tracking Rick. Along the way, they find Daryl Dixon sitting on the road. After a brief confrontation, Daryl agrees to join them. Len and Daryl did not get along, which eventually led to Len being killed by the other Claimers as Joe had seen him trying to frame Daryl for theft.

The Claimers eventually catch Rick, Carl, and Michonne on an abandoned road. Daryl attempts to stop Joe from killing them, saying that they are good people. Joe determines that that was a lie and tells the Claimers to beat him to death. He then tells Rick that they intend to rape Michonne and Carl before killing him. Dan holds Carl down, preparing to rape him. Rick headbutts Joe and they tussle, ending up with Joe holding Rick in a bear hug. Rick bites Joe in the throat, killing him. This stuns the other Claimers, and Michonne and Daryl use this to their advantage, killing Tony, Harley, and Billy. Dan threatens Carl with a knife, then tries to surrender, but Rick brutally stabs and disembowels him as his companions look on, putting a permanent end to the Claimers.

After killing them, Rick collected most of their weapons and gear.



Killed Victims

  • Lou (Zombified, Off-Screen)
  • Len
  • 2 unnamed men (1 Caused)
  • 2 unnamed thieves (Off-Screen)
  • 1 unnamed Claimer (Off-Screen)
  • Numerous counts of zombies and unnamed people



TV Series

Season 4


Red Machete


  • In Red Machete, it is revealed that before the events of "Claimed", there were four unknown men who were members of the Claimers as well. The fate of these four men is unknown, but presumably they had all died by the time the events of "Claimed" occurred.
    • It's possible that one of those four unnamed Claimers was the one who was killed in "Claimed".