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Police: Video Shows Gang Punishing One of Their Own

Police: Video Shows Gang Punishing One of Their Own

Video Capture

Chicago Tribune via Yellowbrix

March 15, 2011

CHICAGO – The beating officially started with a quick crack to the back of the gang member’s head. And then about 15 others descended, punching and kicking him for two minutes.

The rapid-fire punches landed from all directions on his body, sounding strangely like corn popping. Then the victim fell to the floor and the group continued to pummel him with punches and kicks.

The gang member at the bottom of the heap, a Latin King in the Cicero section, was there for his “violation,” punishment in gang parlance. He had allegedly failed to follow through on an order from one of the four ranking Latin King members now on trial in federal court in Chicago.

The beatdown, planned ahead of time and carried out by his own fellow gang members, is not unusual on the street. But in the darkened federal courtroom as a secretly recorded videotape of the beating was aired to the jury, it was a disturbing reflection of the violence that drives and unites gangs.

The four alleged Latin Kings — Augustin Zambrano, Vicente Garcia, Alphonso Chavez and Jose Guzman — are accused of racketeering, drug conspiracy and weapons offenses while running the 26th Street section of the Latin Kings. The gang’s influence reached into the suburbs, the reason prosecutors featured the west suburban beating in the trial.

It is an example, prosecutors said, of the violence that was orchestrated on behalf of the gang. Garcia, accused of being a “regional officer” for the gang, allegedly had ordered the punishment in an attempt to mediate a dispute between two Latin King members.

Gang literature, entered into evidence earlier at the trial, demands loyalty to a gang hierarchy. It references violations and protecting neighborhoods with guns.

Over two days of testimony, Nedal Issa, who headed the Cicero Latin Kings and oversaw the videotaped violation, explained to the jury how the beating unfolded.

Issa, who joined the gang at 13 and was promoted to “Inca” by 2006, had to mediate a dispute between one of his members — identified only as “Chongo” in the trial — and a Latin King from a different section.

“I was the Inca,” said Issa, who cooperated with authorities after he was caught up in the same federal conspiracy probe as the defendants. “So it was my responsibility to make sure none of the guys was involved in anything like that.”

But no solution was found, so the problem wound up in Garcia’s hands, Issa testified.

“Since we couldn’t resolve it, that’s when the Latin King nation got involved,” he said.

Garcia ultimately decided that Chongo would be “violated” for the dispute and as a further punishment should shoot at a rival gang member within 72 hours, Issa testified he was told.

When Chongo failed to carry out the shooting, Issa was ordered to a meeting by Garcia. There Issa was violated, suffering fractured ribs and bruises in the attack, he testified.

Issa then followed through on the order to have Chongo violated. The March 2006 beating was captured by a video camera hidden by agents with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives in a gang hangout with the help of an informant within the Latin Kings.

The lights in the courtroom in the Dirksen U.S. Courthouse were turned off Thursday as the black-and-white footage played.

As the punches accelerated — with some of the gang members landing blows with both arms — the victim can be heard grunting and groaning. At one point as the beating stopped, Issa called out, “Don’t stop, don’t stop,” he acknowledged in court.

Under cross-examination, attorneys for the four reputed gang leaders repeatedly asked Issa about his extensive criminal history and his hopes of receiving a break in his sentence for his cooperation. He also admitted that when he went to the hospital for medical care after his violation, he lied about his legal name to avoid paying the bill.

Nishay Sanan, one of the lawyers, pointed out that Issa lied for a “benefit” at the hospital and then asked him: “You’re also asking the government to give you a benefit here, right?”

Continue to Video >>

  • Badge_max50


    over 3 years ago


    Great group of guys, huh? Any one else say POS??

  • Justice-400_max50


    over 3 years ago


    Bstites, I wouldn't call that letting God sort them out.

  • Pug_max600_max50


    over 3 years ago


    A bunch of oxygen thieves.

  • Fallenherobadge-3-1_max50_max50


    over 3 years ago


    "Bros to the end huh".

  • Me2_max50


    over 3 years ago


    For all the people that watch southland, you probably have heard this already. but i am going to say it again... here is how we fix the gang problem-- you lock all of the bangers into a colosseum, lock the door, throw the key, throw in some guns and ammo, and let god sort out the rest...

    just a though...

  • Photo_user_blank_big


    over 3 years ago


    I am all for theses MORONS holding their version of Choir practice on a daily basis, Nice to see how FIT for duty they all are

  • Photo_user_blank_big


    over 3 years ago

    Maybe these freaks could work out a schedule to do this to each other on a daily basis till they beat each other to death..Sounds like a" Can Do" program to me.

  • Photo_user_blank_big


    over 3 years ago


    Wow there is other important things in this world to worry about.

  • Untitledma28839986-0002_max50


    over 3 years ago


    Life as a gang banger.

  • Badge__hat_max50


    over 3 years ago


    No tears of compassion or pity falling here.

  • Maa_class_badge_max50


    over 3 years ago


    no love lost here, they're all gonna kill each other anyways.

  • P1010058_max50


    over 3 years ago


    Just one question.....Where do you sign up for this gang. I mean I get to hide in dark areas and wear clothes that don't fit and hang out with my friends that can't read or write all to later get my ass beat because a person who's hair has more oil in it than a car motor can have his friends beat me. Please sign me up what a future.......

  • Inst_generic_max50


    over 3 years ago


    Sad, I must say!

  • Photo_user_blank_big


    over 3 years ago


    This has to be an audition for the circus! The room is full of clowns! Get a job losers!

  • Detective_3_max50


    over 3 years ago


    Nothing but animals.

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