Scores of people charged in NYC gang crackdown

Investigators say the victims of a feud between two New York City gangs included a female high school basketball star headed to college.

By Frances Burns
New York Police Commissioner William Bratton UPI/Bill Greenblatt
New York Police Commissioner William Bratton UPI/Bill Greenblatt | License Photo

NEW YORK, June 4 (UPI) -- More than 100 people were charged Wednesday in a crackdown on two New York City gangs whose rivalry allegedly led to the killing of a high-school basketball star.

Police made dozens of arrests during a dawn raid on two housing projects in the Harlem neighborhood in upper Manhattan. Officials said that more than 30 of those named in an indictment are already behind bars.


The targets included the Grant Houses, where Tayshana Murphy, 18, was shot in 2011. The judge, who sentenced Murphy's killer to 25 years to life in 2013, said that Tyshawn Brockington ended the life of a young woman who was headed to college on a scholarship after a career as a star point guard at Murray Bergtraum High School.

Murphy was allegedly killed because of her brother's ties to a gang.

The conspiracy indictment also includes the killing of Walter Sumter, 18, who was shot at a party a few months after Murphy's death. Shootings and weapons offenses are also in the list of charges.

Hundreds of police officers in body armor entered the Grant Houses and the nearby Manhattanville project as helicopters patrolled overhead. Those arrested were mostly young men.


The New York Police Department said the raids are part of Operation Crew Cut, an anti-gang effort begun under Commissioner Raymond Kelly. Commissioner William Bratton said that gangs are becoming involved in "feeder crimes" like identity and credit card theft "in addition to the violence that they engage in that is so much a part of their world."

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