Brooklyn District Attorney Eric Gonzalez, joined by New York City Police Commissioner James P. ONeill, announced Tuesday that 21 alleged gang members have been charged in connection with multiple shootings throughout Brooklyn that left two young men dead and four others injured.
The defendants are between 17 and 41 years old and are alleged members of two subsets of the violent Folk Nation street gang. The subsets, known as Super Rich Kids (SRK-Folk) and Newkirk (Newkirk-Folk), operate primarily in and around East Flatbush and Flatbush, Gonzales said.
These defendants terrorized the streets of Brooklyn by opening fire on perceived rivals and recklessly firing their guns — including in broad daylight — endangering innocent bystanders, Gonzalez said. In one instance, an innocent 15-year-old boy was killed when he was mistaken for a rival gang member.
Over a three-year period, the alleged gang members were engaged in various crimes including murder, assault and weapons possession to establish and maintain their dominance over rival gangs from East Flatbush, Flatbush and Canarsie, according to the district attorney. SRK-Folk members allegedly engaged in armed attacks against rival gang members, shooting individuals they suspected of being rival gang members, which on at least two occasions resulted in fatalities.
Among the victims was 15-year-old Rohan Levy, who was mistaken as a rival gang member and fatally shot in February 2017 in East Flatbush. Another alleged rival, 22-year-old Darren Harrison, had been shot and killed two weeks earlier in Canarsie, officials said.
Nineteen of the defendants were arraigned before Brooklyn Supreme Court Justice Martin Murphy last week on a 65-count indictment in which they were variously charged with second-degree murder; second-degree attempted murder; first-, second-, third- and fourth-degree conspiracy; second-degree criminal possession of a weapon; second-degree criminal use of a weapon; first-degree reckless endangerment and other related crimes.
Depending on their age and the charges, the defendants face various penalties, ranging from probation to 25 years to life in prison.