Gang Leader Sentenced for Murdering Two Individuals in the Dickerson Court and Harbor Homes Neighborhoods
NEWPORT NEWS, Va. – Perry Cousins, 26, of Newport News, Va., was sentenced today to six life sentences plus 60 years in prison for murdering two people as part of his activities with violent street gangs operating in Newport News.
Neil H. MacBride, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia; Alex J. Turner, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI’s Norfolk Division; James D. Fox, Chief of Newport News Police, and Howard E. Gwynn, Newport News Commonwealth’s Attorney, made the announcement after sentencing by United States District Judge Rebecca Beach Smith. Cousins was convicted by a federal jury on May 12, 2011.
“Perry Cousins left a trail of violence and fear everywhere he went as the leader of vicious gangs in Newport News,” said U.S. Attorney MacBride. “This gang killed rivals and drug dealers who threatened their territory, distributed narcotics, and even firebombed a police station in an attempt to intimidate law enforcement and terrorize the community. We’re grateful to our courageous law enforcement partners who investigated this case and continue to take violent gangs off the streets of Newport News.”
“The community is a much safer place with Perry Cousins off the streets,” said Newport News Police Chief Fox. “We have seen a reduction in violent crime since his arrest. He was a domestic terrorist and gang member who ruled by fear and intimidation. I hope that this sends a message to other gang members that the FBI, State Police, Newport News Police and other local police agencies are working together to make our streets safe and if you are a gang member you are a target.”
According to the evidence introduced at trial, Cousins was a member of an enterprise that consisted of three gangs, the “Slump Mobb,” the “Dump Squad,” and “Bang Gang,” all criminal organizations that operated in the Ridley Circle, Harbor Homes and Dickerson Court areas of Newport News, Va. The defendants established the power and prestige of the enterprise through violence. Cousins was charged and convicted of the murders of Rashed Caudle on Aug. 9, 2003, and Lorenzo Thomas on Sept. 12, 2005, as well as the attempted murder, the shooting of an individual in the course of a drug robbery, and the pistol-whipping of another victim who had interfered with a gang fight. In addition, Cousins was convicted of Hobbs Act robbery, carrying out a drug robbery with a sawed-off shotgun, possessing the sawed-off shotgun, felon in possession of a firearm, and participating in a drug conspiracy involving more than 50 grams of crack cocaine.
This case was investigated by the Safe Streets Peninsula Task Force operating out of the FBI’s Newport News Resident Agency, with assistance from the Newport News Police Department and the Virginia State Police. Assistant United States Attorneys Howard Zlotnick and Robert Bradenham II prosecuted the case on behalf of the United States.A copy of this press release may be found on the website of the United States Attorney's Office for the Eastern District of Virginia at http://www.justice.gov/usao/vae. Related court documents and information may be found on the website of the District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia at http://www.vaed.uscourts.gov or on https://pcl.uscourts.gov.