The reputed head of a Northern Virginia motorcycle gang known as the Pagans was shot to death Saturday during an argument with a rival gang member in Warrenton, Va.

Fauquier County Sheriff Luthor Cox said John J. Wood, who was believed to have been in his 30s, was killed during an outdoor bluegrass music festival at Whippoorwill Lake Park in Warrenton. Cox did not know where Wood lived.

Wood was shot three times at close range before a dozen onlookers near a concession stand, according to Cox. Police arrested Timothy Justin Walker, 29, of Manassas at the scene, charged him with murder, and confiscated a 38-caliber pistol found in his possession.

Walker is reputed to be a member of the Phantoms, a suburban Maryland motorcycle gang. According to members of both gangs, the shooting Saturday was part of territorial dispute between the rival groups.

The Pagans, a gang formed in the metropolitan area in the late 1940s, has a following of 500 to 750 members in several East Coast chapters. The Phantoms were formed in the early 1970s in Prince George's County.

"We are an older gang and just want to be left alone," a Pagan member who declined to be identified said yesterday. "We don't want any wars."

Sheriff Cox said he does not expect any further outbreaks of violence between the two groups. He said Walker is in the Fauquier County jail while awaiting his arraignment, which is scheduled for today.