Saturday, July 10, 2010

The Black Guerrilla Family

Today's Baltimore Sun has some crime news that borders on the surreal. The story concerns the arrest of prison guard Alicia Simmons, who is accused of helping a prison gang called the Black Guerrilla Family by smuggling in drugs and money. She seems to have been a sort of crime groupie:
Simmons, 34, also was in possession of letters, inmate ID cards, debit cards and other correspondence linked to some of the city's most notorious criminals. There's a letter from Kevin Gary, the Tree Top Bloods member known for his tinted red contact lenses, and another from Isaac Smith, convicted in the firebombing of a North Baltimore community activist's home, that discussed Simmons being criminally charged.

She also had inmate identification cards in the names of Johnny "J.R." Butler and Calvin "Turkey" Wright, recently convicted for running a violent east-side drug ring connected to at least two killings; and Ronnie Thomas, better known as "Skinny Suge," the producer of the infamous "Stop Snitching" videos.

As if that weren't weird enough, consider this detail about the gang she is accused of helping:

The Black Guerrilla Family is described by the DEA as the largest and most powerful prison gang in the state, with a presence in every facility and a top-down paramilitary structure that encouraged extortion and violence to further its goals. Already, the case has revealed how leaders used a handbook called the "Black Book" to spread its message while placing members to work with city school children and violence intervention programs as a front for recruiting.
Not just your average prison gang, the BGF has a revolutionary agenda, a lawcode written in Swahili, pamphlets that spread its message of violent, pan-African solidarity, and at least one member who is paid by the city to teach kids to stay away from gangs and violence.

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