FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT
AUSA VICKIE E. LEDUC or
MARCIA MURPHY at 410-209-4885
April 15, 2010
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
TWO TTP BLOODS MEMBERS CONVICTED OF RACKETEERING ACTIVITIES
Third Defendant Pleads Guilty After Two Days of Trial
Baltimore, Maryland - A federal jury convicted Tavon Mouzone, a/k/a “Batman” and “Bloody Batman,” age 24, of Baltimore County, Maryland and Anthony Fleming, a/k/a “Mo Easy,” age 23, of Baltimore today of participating in a racketeering conspiracy through the Tree Top Piru Bloods (TTP Bloods), which engaged in narcotics trafficking and robbery. The jury also convicted Fleming of conspiracy to and possessing with intent to distribute crack cocaine.
A third defendant, Michelle Hebron, a/k/a “Michelle Hell” and “BG,” age 25, of Hagerstown, pleaded guilty to the racketeering conspiracy on the second day of trial.
The jury verdict was announced by United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Rod J. Rosenstein; Baltimore City State’s Attorney Patricia C. Jessamy; Special Agent in Charge Theresa R. Stoop of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives - Baltimore Field Division; Special Agent in Charge Ava Cooper-Davis of the Drug Enforcement Administration - Washington Field Division; Special Agent in Charge Richard A. McFeely of the Federal Bureau of Investigation; Baltimore Police Commissioner Frederick H. Bealefeld III; Baltimore County State’s Attorney Scott Shellenberger; Chief James W. Johnson of the Baltimore County Police Department; Wicomico County State’s Attorney Davis Ruark; Wicomico County Sheriff Mike Lewis; the Washington County Narcotics Task Force led by Washington County Sheriff Douglas Mullendore; Anne Arundel County Police Chief James Teare, Sr.; Acting Salisbury Police Chief Ivan E. Barkley; and Hagerstown Police Chief Arthur Smith.
“The TTP Bloods case exemplifies the superb work law enforcement agents and prosecutors are doing to reduce violent crime in Maryland,” said U.S. Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein. “By working together to develop cases that target criminal gangs and not just individual criminals, they are making a dramatic contribution to public safety.”
“Violent gangs are no longer isolated to our inner cities, they are invading communities throughout Maryland and across our nation,” says ATF Special Agent in Charge Theresa R. Stoop. “We are relentlessly working to stop their spread of violence; and no matter where they set up shop, ATF will shut them down.”
TTP Bloods, a violent gang, originated from a street gang known as “the Bloods” that was formed in Los Angeles, California in the early 1970s. The Bloods broke into individual “sets” including a subset known as Tree Top Pirus (TTP). TTP spread throughout the country, including Maryland. TTP in Maryland has its roots in a local gang which began in the Washington County Detention Center in Hagerstown, Maryland in about 1999. The gang was formed for mutual protection in response to the aggression of other inmates from Baltimore and spread throughout Maryland mostly by recruiting from inside Maryland prisons.
According to trial testimony, from 2005 to February 2008, Mouzon and Fleming were members of TTP. Evidence was introduced that as members of TTP, Mouzone and Fleming regularly met with other TTP gang members to discuss, among other things, past acts of violence and other crimes committed by gang members against rival gang members and others; to notify one another about gang members who were arrested or incarcerated; to discuss the disciplining of TTP gang members; to discuss police interactions with gang members; to share with one another the identities of individuals who may be cooperating with law enforcement and propose actions to be taken against those individuals; to plan and agree upon the commission of future crimes, including robberies, drug trafficking, and assaults, and the means to cover up these crimes; and to reinforce gang rules. The jury also heard testimony concerning the December 17, 2006 murder of a Baltimore County resident and the November 17, 2006 murder of a Baltimore City resident, both by members of TTP.
According to trial testimony, as part of his gang activities Fleming also participated in a drug conspiracy and on April 24, 2007, distributed 50 grams or more of crack cocaine.
According to Hebron’s plea agreement, she was one of the leaders of the Tree Top Pirettes and corresponded on a regular basis with Steve Willock, the TTP leader in Maryland, regarding TTP business. Hebron also admitted committing the murder of a person she believed to be a rival gang member. Law enforcement recovered the gun used in the murder and a poem that Hebron had written about the murder during a search of her apartment on October 7, 2007.
Mouzone and Fleming face a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison for the RICO conspiracy. Fleming also faces a maximum sentence of life in prison for the drug conspiracy. U.S. District Judge William D. Quarles, Jr. scheduled sentencing for July 9, 2010 at 10:30.m.
Michelle Hebron faces a maximum sentence of life in prison and Judge Quarles scheduled her sentencing for June 23, 2010 at 1:00 p.m.
This case is the result of a long-term joint investigation by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, the Baltimore City Police Department, the Baltimore County Police Department, the Baltimore City State’s Attorney’s Office and the United States Attorney’s Office. Fourteen defendants, have pleaded guilty to the RICO conspiracy and 12 of those have been sentenced to between 21 months and 30 years in prison. Sherman Pride, a/k/a Dark Black and DB, age 35, of Salisbury, Maryland; and Ronnie Thomas, a/k/a Rodney Thomas, Skinny Suge and Tall Vialz, age 36, of Baltimore, were convicted on January 28, 2010, of participating in the TTP racketeering conspiracy. Pride also was convicted of conspiring to distribute cocaine. Charges against Keili Dyson and Keon Williams are pending. Four defendants have pleaded guilty to gun or drug charges.
Mr. Rosenstein and Ms. Jessamy gave special thanks to Secretary Gary Maynard of the Maryland Department of Public Safety and Correctional Services; Commissioner J. Michael Stouffer of the Maryland Division of Correction; Director Patrick McGee of the Maryland Division of Parole and Probation; and the officers at the Western and North Branch Correctional Institutions and the Wicomico County Detention Center for their work in the investigation and prosecution of this case.
Mr. Rosenstein and Mrs. Jessamy also thanked Assistant U.S. Attorney Michael Hanlon, and Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Christopher Mason, a cross-designated Baltimore City Assistant State’s Attorney, who are prosecuting the case and Assistant State’s Attorney LaRai Forrest who assisted in the prosecution.