A yearlong investigation led to criminal charges for 18 alleged gang members who allegedly were involved in waves of violence and ran an elaborate cocaine-selling ring in Westchester.
Westchester County District Attorney Anthony Scarpino, Jr., announced on Wednesday, June 12, that 18 alleged gang members had been arrested as part of a sweep dubbed “Operation: Crip Keeper” in New Rochelle. It's the third such sweep in Westchester in recent months.
Scarpino announced that a Westchester County grand jury handed up a 50-count indictment against 14 members of the “8 Trey Crips” or “E.T.C.” gang, which operates out New Rochelle. That indictment includes charges of conspiracy, attempted murder, robbery, burglary, and multiple drug-related offenses.
A second, 18-count indictment, charged five other gang members for their roles in a conspiracy to sell cocaine.
Sixteen of the 18 alleged gang members were arrested; two are still being sought by police. Five of the suspects were already behind bars. While arresting the 16 men, investigators recovered five handguns, a stun gun, and an assault rifle.
The indictment alleges that several of the gang members distributed cocaine from a Washington Avenue residence in New Rochelle. There, Brandon “Bones” Brown took calls from cocaine buyers and sent other gang members, including Artez “Tez” Jackson to make sales on his behalf.
Scarpino said that “the relationship between (the two) soured, however, when Brown was incarcerated at Rikers Island fora different case and Jackson began to sell directly to Brown’s customers.” That conflict ended with Brown shooting at Jackson on Sept. 23 last year near the intersection of Walnut Street and Washington Avenue in New Rochelle.
The indictment further alleges that Brown, Jamier “Play” Starkes, and Eduardo “Gio” Gutierrez, attempted to kill a rival gang member on Oct. 10, 2017. After the shooting, Brown allegedly sent videos of news coverage of the story to multiple people over Facebook, comparing himself to Elmer Fudd.
The gang was also implicated in a third attempted murder on May 8 last year on May Street in New Rochelle. Scarpino said that after the shooting, Jahil “Fat Boy” Ricketts picked up the shell casings in an attempt to conceal the crime from the police.
According to Scarpino, “the gang often used coded language to communicate over the telephone and Facebook private messaging.”
The District Attorney noted that in separate incidents that were not a part of the indictment, two other gang members were arrested in Yonkers and Mount Vernon.
The second indictment charges Corey James - who was also named in the first - and four other gang members worked together in a cocaine trafficking operation. They face charges that include criminal possession and sale of controlled substances.
“We value our safe quality of life here in Westchester and as long as there are gangs pushing cocaine, heroin, fentanyl, and other narcotics, and creating violent enterprises to protect their territory, that safety is in jeopardy,” Scarpino said in a statement. “As today’s arrests in New Rochelle, and earlier arrests in other communities, show we are committed to putting an end to gang control and violence and, just as importantly, to stopping the insidious sale of drugs, which all too frequently, cause death.”
New Rochelle Police Commissioner Joseph Schaller added, “Our focus is to keep New Rochelle safe and to rid our streets of gangs like the “8 trey Crips.” The New Rochelle Police Department thanks its law enforcement partners for their assistance both in the investigation and in the execution of warrants and arrests yesterday morning. With their help “Operation: Crip Keeper’ can be called a success.”
Those implicated in the first indictment:
- Evan DeYoung Adams aka “Emula,” 22, of New Rochelle;
- Brandon Brown aka “Bones,” 25, of the Bronx;
- Gerardo Alvarez, aka “EZ,” 18, of New Rochelle;
- Ebbin Croft aka “Dinero,” 23, of Yonkers;
- Keyonnie Davis aka “Zeus,” 23, of New Rochelle;
- Kody Fudge, 27, of New Rochelle;
- Eduardo Gutierrez aka “Gio,” 34, of New Rochelle;
- Artez Jackson aka “Tez,” 22, of New Rochelle;
- Corey James aka “Curry,” 23, of New Rochelle;
- Ashley Jankowski, 29, of New Rochelle;
- Jamie Martindale, 21, of Mount Vernon;
- Jahil Ricketts aka “Fat Boy” aka “Sheff,” 21, of Rye;
- Jamier Starkes aka “Play,” 23, of Mount Vernon;
- Sion Young aka “C Money,” 27, of Mount Vernon.
Those charged in the second indictment:
- Eric Barnett, 38, of Mount Vernon;
- Anton Morrison, 24, of New Rochelle;
- David Shelton, 62, of New Rochelle;
- Miguel Tarrant aka “Zee” or “Zelda” (no age provided).
“I commend all the agencies involved for working together effectively to bring this investigation to a successful conclusion,” Westchester County Department of Public Safety Commissioner Thomas Gleason said. “Teamwork and interagency cooperation continues to be a critical way that we keep Westchester safe and remove illegal narcotics and those who sell them from our streets.”
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