Jury convicts two accused gang members in racketeering case

By Tricia Bishop (Baltimore Sun)
January 29, 2010

A federal jury convicted two Maryland gang leaders, one of whom produced the infamous “Stop Snitching” videos, of racketeering Thursday evening, after two days of deliberation.

Sherman Pride (also known as “Dark Black” and “DB”), 35, of Salisbury and Ronnie Thomas (“Skinny Suge” and “Tall Vialz”), 36, of Baltimore face a maximum of 20 years in prison for the racketeering conspiracy. Thomas also faces a maximum of life in prison for an additional drug conviction.

According to trial testimony, the men were members of the Bloods’ violent Tree Top Piru set, which dealt drugs throughout the state and conspired to commit murder and robbery. In letters written by TTP leaders, Pride was identified as the leader of the Maryland Eastern Shore set of the TTP and Thomas was identified as a gang leader in Maryland, according to trial testimony.

Thomas produced both “Stop Snitching” videos, which encourage retaliation against law enforcement cooperators. Eight others connected to the videos have also been prosecuted and found guilty in federal court.

Sentencing for Pride and Thomas is scheduled for April in Baltimore U.S. District Court. Five other defendants charged with gang racketeering are expected to go on trial in March. Fourteen people have already pleaded guilty to the racketeering charges, and four have admitted to gun or drug offenses.

Copyright © 2010, The Baltimore Sun

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