‘Block Boyz’ Gang Members Found Guilty
Five members of the “Block Boyz” gang have been found guilty on RICO and drug trafficking offenses, as well as firearm offenses.
29-year-old DeMarcus D. Morris, 29-year-old Jimmie R. Durden Jr., 24-year-old Lonnie D. Johnson, 24-year-old Gary J. McCain, and 45-year-old Larshanda C. Davenport face lengthy jail sentences.
United States District Judge Elizabeth E. Foote presided over the trial that started Monday, September 17th. The jury deliberated for approximately five hours before returning the verdict. All of the defendants were named as part of a Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organization or RICO conspiracy in the indictment, which was filed in July of 2017.
The defendants were found guilty of Conspiracy to Distribute Controlled Substances, Possession of a Firearm by a Convicted Felon, Distributing Crack Cocaine, and Distributing Powder Cocaine.
The “Block Boyz” gang has terrorized the Queensborough neighborhood for too long,” said U.S. Attorney David C. Joseph. “Today’s verdict will bring some peace to the citizens in Shreveport, and sends a clear message to drug dealers and gangs that this type of violent crime will not be tolerated - you will go to federal prison. These defendants were given a fair trial, and now they will face their consequences. The U.S. Attorney’s Office is committed to working with our law enforcement partners and the citizens of our communities to rid our streets of violent crime, and make our communities a safer place to work, live and play.“
“I applaud the jury’s decision and thank them for their hard work and sacrifices throughout this trial,” FBI Special Agent in Charge Eric J. Rommal stated. “I also commend the great work put forth by all of our federal, state, and local law enforcement partners to locate, apprehend, and bring the “Block Boyz” to justice. Without a doubt, the residents of Shreveport will feel much safer now and hopefully be able to reclaim their neighborhoods.”
Evidence admitted at trial revealed that beginning in 2012, the defendants took part in a criminal organization known as the “Block Boyz” and the “Get Money Boyz” or “GMB.” The organization distributed controlled substances, murdered, robbed, possessed firearms illegally and conducted other crimes primarily within the Queensborough and Ingleside neighborhoods of Shreveport. Gang members were charged with at least 66 acts that members of the organization committed to further the RICO conspiracy. The acts include threats, sale of drugs and shootings. The organization sold crack cocaine, powder cocaine, roxicodone, marijuana, ecstasy and alprazolam.
Gang members sold illegal drugs and committed armed robberies. They maintained and circulated a collection of firearms for use in their criminal activity and used cell phones to operate their criminal enterprise. Members of the organization bragged about their illegal activity, such as their possession of firearms, and took pictures of themselves with firearms and money to intimidate others and increase their position in the community.
As a result of their conviction on the RICO count, each defendant faces up to 20 years in prison. In addition to the RICO penalties, four of the five defendants face additional penalties for the drug and firearm offenses. The defendants also face fines up to $5 million and forfeiture of property seized in the case.
The court set sentencing for October 17, 2018.