19 alleged gang members arrested in Brooklyn takedown

BROOKLYN, New York City (WABC) -- Brooklyn District Attorney Eric Gonzalez and NYPD Commissioner Dermot Shea announced a major gang takedown Wednesday that they hope will slow the surge in gun violence plaguing New York City.

Authorities said 19 alleged gang members were busted in connection with at least six shootings, some of which were caught on video.

In one incident, a gunman can be seen blasting his way down the street. In another, an assailant sprays a crowded intersection with bullets. The brazen shootings -- in broad daylight -- terrorized entire neighborhoods in the borough.

"This is an important case for the people of Brooklyn, making sure that we're holding accountable," Gonzalez said.

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Prosecutors say some of the victims were rival gang member, while others were innocent bystanders caught in crossfire or struck with stray bullets.

The wave of gun violence is allegedly over criminal control of public housing complexes in Bedford-Stuyvesant and Crown Heights, known in gang-parlance as "spinning."

"Shooting for the sake of showing dominance of one gang over another gang is endangering the lives of New Yorkers," Gonzalez said. "We see children are being shot. We saw an innocent storekeeper almost lose their life."

It all comes with violent crime on the rise across New York. Shea believes it's being driven by a relatively small number of gang members, and te arrests are part of the NYPD's strategy to target them and get them off the streets.

Some of the suspects are as young as 16, and investigators seized cellphones, used court ordered wiretaps, surveillance video, and DNA.

"These individuals lived in our Brooklyn neighborhoods," NYPD Inspector Jason Savino said. "The same individuals that showed no remorse as they relentlessly fired guns are now behind bars."

Gonzalez said eight of the defendants named in the 77-count indictment were arraigned last week in Brooklyn Supreme Court. The rest of the defendants will be arraigned on a later date.

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The defendants are variously charged with second-degree murder; second-degree attempted murder; first-, second- and fourth-degree conspiracy; first- and second-degree assault; first-degree attempted assault; first-degree reckless endangerment; and second-degree criminal possession of a weapon.

They face up to 25 years in prison on the top conspiracy charge, and the five defendants charged with murder face up to 25 years to life in prison.

They were identified as:
--Jabari Albright, 17, of East Harlem, New York
--James Alston, 18, of Bedford-Stuyvesant, Brooklyn
--Tysean Devonish, 23, of Bedford-Stuyvesant, Brooklyn
--Jalen Elliot, 16, of Weeksville, Brooklyn
--Lamel Gunn, 20, of Brownsville, Brooklyn
--Nysair Harper, 17, of Far Rockaway, New York
--Kaireil Haynie, 18, of Stuyvesant Heights, Brooklyn
--Lamique Haynie, 20, of Stuyvesant Heights, Brooklyn
--Vincent Lilly, 18, of Bedford-Stuyvesant, Brooklyn
--Naccion McCray, 19, of East New York, Brooklyn
--Zion McDuffie, 20, of Bedford-Stuyvesant, Brooklyn
--Ronald Roberts, 19, of Bedford-Stuyvesant, Brooklyn
--Wydeem Rudd, 21, of Bronx, New York
--Shawn Singletary, 19, of Stuyvesant Heights, Brooklyn
--Alexander Williams, 24, of Brownsville, Brooklyn
--Infinite Berry, 21, of Bedford-Stuyvesant, Brooklyn
--Isaiah Johnson, 20, of Bedford-Stuyvesant, Brooklyn
--Andre Starkey, 20, of East New York, Brooklyn
--Kareem Waters, 22, of Bedford-Stuyvesant, Brooklyn

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