Governor Cuomo orders extra officers to Suffolk County to combat murderous gang

BRENTWOOD, Long Island (WABC) -- New York Governor Andrew Cuomo is taking action by ordering more than two dozen law enforcement officers to Suffolk County to deal with gang violence that is terrifying communities.

15 young people have been killed in the past 15 months.

"MS-13 are thugs," Governor Cuomo said.

New York's governor just promised a whole lot more in the way of state resources to fight the problem.

"We can do undercover work, we could do patrol work, marked cars, unmarked cars," Governor Cuomo said.

If one life lost to gangs is too many, then in Brentwood and in Central Islip the brutal violence from MS-13 has become unfathomable.

In these communities, a growing numbers of relatives are sponsoring gang members who arrive in this country undocumented.

The problem only worsened by the former police commissioner, now a convicted felon, who had compromised intelligence efforts for years.

"You had four years of dismantled task forces because of the Burke Administration, and I truly think that put Suffolk County behind the eight ball," said Joseph Giacalone, John Jay College of Criminal Justice.

The new police commissioner is trying to reverse that, but was outpaced after a slew of remains were discovered back in September, after several teens at Brentwood High School had disappeared.

Then on April 12th, the bodies of four more people were found bludgeoned by machetes in Central Islip.

There is the sickening revelation that the problem is spreading and so is the debate.

"Some of them, we believe, are already associated with MS-13 when they come across the border, some are not, but get recruited when they get here," said Sheriff Vincent DeMarco, Suffolk County Sheriff's Office.

This issue is also being taken up by the White House. Friday morning, U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions is set to visit with Suffolk County lawmakers to discuss further solutions.

But first and foremost, according to people in Brentwood, the answers aren't only at the border or the police station.

"Definitely educate them a lot more," said Robert Mickens, Brentwood School Board candidate.

Mickens is running for a seat on the school board after his daughter, Nisa, was killed by MS-13, one day before her 16th birthday.

"I think it's about intimidation," Mickens said. "Just say no, if they don't want to be part of it."

You can watch the governor's full news conference below:
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