As reported by The Star-Ledger (NJ):
Charges in witness beating
Two are accused of attacking informant in Crips case
Saturday, March 24, 2007
BY JEFF WHELAN AND WILLIAM KLEINKNECHT
Two Newark men were indicted by a federal grand jury yesterday on charges they beat a witness who had been cooperating with the FBI in a racketeering investigation of their gang, the Grape Street Crips.
While gangsters may often think they smell a rat, authorities say these two had proof: court documents that named the confidential informant and included a typewritten report of his statements to local police.
In a three-count indictment returned in federal court in Newark, Corey "Supreme" McGill, 29, and Llewellyn "Well-N" Johnson, 26, were charged with conspiracy, witness tampering and using a firearm to commit a crime. McGill, according to the indictment, was the "Big Homie," or first in command of the gang's Newark chapter.
The witness, who was not named in the indictment, suffered a broken jaw, cuts and gums so swollen it initially appeared six of his teeth had been knocked out, said Assistant U.S. Attorney Joseph Gribko.
In addition to cooperating with federal law enforcement officials in the current investigation into the Grape Street Crips, the informant also had cooperated with local authorities in Essex County in a case against some of the gang's members in 2005, Gribko said. Prosecutors declined to release details on that case.
The documents that showed the informant had previously talked to law enforcement officials apparently surfaced during the discovery process in the state case, said Special Agent Stephen Siegel, a spokesman for the FBI. Local authorities, he said, were forced to turn the documents over to defense attorneys, one of whom in turn apparently gave it to a member of the Grape Street Crips.
"It was used nefariously, but there is nothing nefarious about them acquiring it," Siegel said. "It sounds like it was a piece of paper that was passed around from gang member to gang member that pointed to this guy."
The indictment did not provide further details about the documents, and authorities did not elaborate on why or when local officials were required to turn them over.
McGill and Johnson have been in custody since January, when they were initially charged by the FBI immediately after the alleged beating.
Maria Delgaizo Noto, McGill's court-appointed attorney, said her client denies the charges. Richard Verde, Johnson's attorney, did not return a call for comment. The two men face up to 20 years in prison if convicted...
The full story can be found at; http://www.nj.com/news/ledger/index.ssf?/base/news-11/1174714161226220.xml&coll=1
The streets are the streets, period.
The rules, regulations, and manner of conduct are very different than in say ones own fairy tale snow globe imaginings of life, law, and legality.
The general rule has been since forever; 'Snitches get stitiches'. Yes folks have been making shorts and songs about as much over the last couple of years but this is nothing new it's been in play and a playground rule since a long time ago.
On the other hand if you do the right thing and do become a witness well don't be foolish enoug to think that the law will or even can protect you. The only person who can protect you is you, unless you're a fortunate son of a senator or some such. If I were this guy I'd have had myself identified in papers and official docs as 'Witness John Doe' and I'd relocate too, at a minimum.
Anyway it's a shame he went through what he did bt the reality is what it is and there is no free lunch, not even for good guys.