Brentwood parents warned about students' clothes because of gangs

ByEyewitness News WABC logo
Friday, September 23, 2016
Brentwood students warned about wearing colors to school
Diana Rocco reporting live

BRENTWOOD, Long Island (WABC) -- Parents in one Long Island neighborhood have been asked to be wary of what their children wear to school because of increased gang violence.

Brentwood parents were asked by the school superintendent to be aware of what colors their children wear to school after a student's shirt was taken and burned while he was on his way to school.

According to a letter posted on the school district's website, a boy was approached by a car full of people who told the student to hand over the blue shirt he was wearing. They set the shirt on fire and the people in the car ordered the student not to wear that color again.

"Please know that school officials will continue to remind students to be observant of their surroundings and report any suspicious activities immediately," said the letter from Levi McIntyre, the superintendent of the Brentwood school district. "We are also asking parents to be vigilant in monitoring their children and be aware of their location at all times. We also ask that children not wear clothing that could be considered to be gang-affiliated."

The murders of 16-year-old Kayla Cuevas and 15-year-old Nisa Mickens along with finding the remains of 19-year-old Oscar Acosta has sent shock waves through this community.

A second set of remains found Wednesday have yet to be identified. Suffolk County police believe all were the victims of gang violence.

On Thursday, the scope of the search widened, again in Brentwood, as police searched now-abandoned Pilgrim State Hospital on Crooked Hill Road for possibly more bodies. Dozens of officers descended upon the grounds of the Thursday. Some of them were armed with shovels for digging.

Many say the police can't solve the problem without the community's help.

"We're getting more and more people to join. We're going to take our streets back. This is our home. This is where we are raising our kids and these animals need to go," a resident said.