Gang Member Pleads Guilty to Robbery and Firearm Charges Related to 2011 Murder
Deirdre M. Daly, United States Attorney for the District of Connecticut, today announced that on February 8, 2017, TREVOR MURPHY, also known as “Snookie,” 28, of West Haven, pleaded guilty before Chief U.S. District Judge Janet C. Hall in New Haven to federal robbery and firearm charges related to the murder of Joseph Zargo on December 23, 2011.
This matter stems from an investigation into a criminal enterprise known as the Red Side Guerilla Brims (“RSGB”), a sect of the Bloods street gang that operated in New Haven from 2011 through 2015, which was engaged in narcotics trafficking and related acts of violence, including murder, attempted murder, assaults and armed robberies. MURPHY was a member of RSGB.
According to court documents and statements made in court, MURPHY ordered a quantity of ecstasy from Joseph Zargo as part of a plan to rob him of drugs and cash. Just after midnight on December 23, 2011, MURPHY met Zargo on Houston Street in New Haven. After MURPHY took ecstasy pills from Zargo, he pulled out a firearm. When Zargo reached into his pocket, MURPHY shot Zargo once in the chest. Zargo died later that morning.
MURPHY pleaded guilty to one count of interference with commerce by robbery, an offense that carries a maximum term of imprisonment of 20 years, and one count of using a firearm during and in relation to a crime of violence, an offense that carries a consecutive term of imprisonment of at least 10 years and a maximum term of imprisonment of life.
Under the terms of a binding plea agreement, if accepted by the court, the parties have agreed that a term of imprisonment of 360 months is an appropriate sentence in this case.
Chief Judge Hall scheduled sentencing for May 3, 2017.
MURPHY has been detained since his arrest on September 30, 2015.
This investigation is being conducted by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), the New Haven Police Department, the Connecticut Department of Correction, the Connecticut State Police, the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, the Maine Drug Enforcement Agency and the Hamden Police Department. The New Haven State’s Attorney’s Office also provided critical assistance in the investigation.
An instrumental component of the investigation has been the work of the Connecticut State Crime Laboratory in utilizing the National Integrated Ballistic Information Network (NIBIN) to analyze ballistics evidence.
This matter is being prosecuted in the District of Connecticut by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Robert Spector, Peter Markle and Jocelyn Kaoutzanis. A related case in the District of Maine is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Joel Casey.