Jury convicts two members of Heartless Felons gang of armed carjacking in Tremont neighborhood
A federal jury convicted two Cleveland men of participating in a carjacking in the city’s Tremont neighborhood, said Acting U.S. Attorney David A. Sierleja, FBI Special Agent in Charge Stephen D. Anthony and Cleveland Police Chief Calvin Williams.
Kenneth Jackson, Jr., 20, and Antowine Palmer, 24, were convicted of an armed carjacking in July 2015. Jackson was also convicted of carjacking a couple the following day. The jury found Jackson brandished a firearm in both attacks while Palmer used a firearm in the first carjacking.
They are scheduled to be sentenced on Aug. 23. Palmer still has a murder trial pending in the Cuyahoga County Court of Common Pleas.
Tervon’tae Taylor, 23, of Cleveland Heights; D’wan Dillard, Jr., 20, Calvin Rembert, 23, both of Cleveland, previously pleaded guilty to their roles in carjackings in and around Tremont in the summer of 2015.
According to evidence and testimony introduced in the week-long trial:
Palmer and Jackson were members of the Heartless Felons street gang. They were feuding with a different set of Heartless Felons. The defendants planned to do a drive-by shooting of members of the rival group, so they went to Tremont to steal a car so they would be unrecognizable during the drive-by shooting.
Palmer, Jackson, Taylor and Rembert saw a man loading a GMC Denali in the early morning hours of July 25, 2015. They held a loaded gun to the victim’s head, pistol-whipped him and stole his vehicle, his wallet and his cellular phone. The defendants used his credit cards to make purchases at a Wal Mart.
“These defendants are violent predators who illegally used firearms to steal from law-abiding citizens,” Sierleja said.
“These men terrorized victims and the city with their dangerous, gun-wielding car thefts,” Anthony said. “The Violent Crime Task Force and our local partners are committed to aggressively investigate predators who choose to engage in heinous acts of violence against our citizens.”
This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Kelly Galvin and Robert Patton following an investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and Cleveland Division of Police.