BGF hitman receives two life sentences plus 15 years for murder, other crimes


    A Black Guerrilla Family (BGF) hitman convicted in June of first-degree murder, attempted first-degree murder, first-degree assault and other charges has been sentenced to two life sentences plus 15 years, the Baltimore City State's Attorney's Office said on Monday. (Courtesy of Baltimore City State's Attorney's Office)

    BALTIMORE (WBFF) -- A Black Guerrilla Family (BGF) hitman convicted in June of first-degree murder, attempted first-degree murder, first-degree assault and other charges has been sentenced to two life sentences plus 15 years, the Baltimore City State's Attorney's Office said on Monday.

    The hitman, Kenneth "Slay" Jones, was found to have carried out execution-style shootings on behalf of the gang accused of operating in the Greenmount neighborhood, according to a release from the state's attorney's office.

    In addition to murder and assault charges, Jones was convicted of using a handgun in the commission of a crime of violence, being a prohibited person with a firearm, participation in a criminal gang and conspiracy to establish and entrench a gang by unlawful means.

    In 2013, the Office of the State's Attorney's Major Investigations Unit (MIU) indicted a group of nearly 50 BGF members and associates accused. According to investigators, the gang began establishing a presence near Greenmount Cemetery as early as 2005 by trafficking drugs, using weapons and committing "serial acts of violence," the release said.

    The MIU built a case against Jones based on crimes linked to him, including:

    • Shooting and killing Gregory Rochester in January 2007, following rumors that Rochester was cooperating with law enforcement, after which witnesses identified Jones as the shooter;
    • Attempting to shoot and kill Perry Johnson in 2011 near E. North Avenue, which investigators found was a retaliation spurred by gang members' beliefs that Johnson was also talking to police;
    • and shooting Lamontae Smith twice in the 300 block of East 24th Street in Barclay in October 2013, after which witnesses identified Jones as the shooter.

    Jones pled guilty to possession of a handgun in relation to the incident involving Johnson and was charged with the attempted murder of Smith.

    MIU Chief Gerald Collins said he hopes the effort “sends a message to any current or would-be gang members that there are serious consequences to participating in a violent criminal enterprise."

    "We want them to consider if their freedom is worth the violent lifestyle they’ve chosen to live,” said Collins in the release.

    The unit has relied upon a seldom-used gang statute to connect the gang's members and associations to a "sustained campaign of violence and drug trafficking over an eight-year period," the statement said.

    State's Attorney Marilyn Mosby said after Jones' sentencing that "it's a new day for gangs in Baltimore City."

    Speaking directly about the gang, Mosby said in the release, "Let me be clear, BGF does not own our streets, and we will make no room for them to continue their violent drug operations in our city.”

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