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"The Claimers", as called by Greg Nicotero, are a group of survivors introduced in the episode "Claimed" of Season 4 of AMC's The Walking Dead. They serve as the primary antagonists of the second half of Season 4.
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.
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.
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.
The Claimers unknowingly cross paths with Rick Grimes as they raid a house where Rick, his son Carl, and Michonne 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 for being dishonest.
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.
- 1 unnamed man
- 2 unnamed thieves
- 1 unnamed Claimer
- Lou (Zombified)
- Numerous counts of zombies and unnamed people
- 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.