DOJ Seal

Department of Justice

U.S. Attorney's Office
District of Minnesota

For Immediate Release

Thursday, July 26, 2018
Erica H. MacDonald
, United States Attorney
Contact: Tasha Zerna

Six Members of Saint Paul Street Gang "Ham Crazy" Sentenced for Federal Firearms Conspiracy

United States Attorney Erica H. MacDonald announced the sentencing of six members of a Saint Paul street gang, known as the HAM Crazy, for conspiring to illegally possess firearms. MARVELL VOSHON JEFFERSON, 24, SHELBY DELANE ASHFORD, JR., 24, CASEY JEMAR DAVIS, 24, PHILLIP DWAYNE JACKSON, 23, NAKIA MARQUIRE MARTIN, 25, and PIERRE CORTEZ JENKINS, 23, have been sentenced to prison by Senior Judge Ann D. Montgomery in U.S. District Court in Minneapolis, Minnesota. A seventh defendant, CARMELO MANUEL MARRERO, 23, has pleaded guilty to conspiracy and will be sentenced at a later date. All seven defendants either had prior felony convictions or were otherwise prohibited from legally possessing firearms or ammunition.

 

“Keeping our neighborhoods, communities and families safe from gun and gang violence is a top priority for the Department and for my office,” said United States Attorney Erica MacDonald. “As this case demonstrates, our concerted effort to keep guns out of the hands of criminals is ongoing. By leveraging the strong relationships we have with our federal, state and local law enforcement partners, we will remain steadfast in our duty to keep communities safe.”

 

“It’s unfortunate all of the violence these individuals have inflicted on St. Paul, but justice prevails,” said ATF Assistant Special Agent in Charge Kirk Howard of the St. Paul Field Division. “St. Paul Police Chief Axtell made it very clear that firearm violence will not be tolerated, and we stand united with them to end the cycle of gang and firearm-related violent crime in this city.”

 

Saint Paul Police Chief Todd Axtell said, “Saint Paul is a safer place today, thanks to the incredibly hard work and collaboration of our police officers, agents with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives, and our other partners. Together, we have made it clear that settling disagreements through gun violence is not welcome in our city—and we will use all available resources to hold accountable those who do engage in these types of activities.”

 

Since at least January 2014, the defendants maintained active membership in the street gang known as the HAM Crazy. The main purpose of the HAM Crazy gang was to preserve and protect their territory, power, status, and reputation, primarily on the Eastside of Saint Paul, through the use of violence and intimidation against rival Saint Paul gangs, such as the Hit Squad.

 

According to the defendants’ guilty pleas and documents filed in court, since at least January 2014, the HAM Crazy gang has been in an ongoing gang war with several rival gangs, including the Hit Squad. This gang war has resulted in gang members on both sides of the rivalry being shot and/or killed and has endangered the lives and safety of innocent bystanders and the community because many of the shootings occurred in public venues. HAM Crazy members and rival gang members often used social media platforms, such as Facebook, YouTube, and Snapchat, as a means through which to disrespect, intimidate, and threaten rivals by memorializing their brandishing of firearms, displaying of money, throwing of gang signs, and publishing of rap videos containing explicit and implicit threats against rivals.

 

According to the defendants’ guilty pleas and documents filed in court, due to the ongoing gang war and the need for firearms to conduct some of their gang-related activity, between January 2014 and December 2017, the defendants conspired to illegally obtain and jointly possess at least 12 firearms, including some with obliterated serial numbers, that were stolen, and/or that had high-capacity magazines. The defendants and other HAM Crazy members also attempted to buy, sell, trade, and obtain firearms through social media.

 

This case is the result of a joint investigation conducted by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, the Saint Paul Police Department, and the Minnesota Department of Corrections. This case was brought as part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), an initiative that brings together federal, state and local law enforcement to specifically target and combat gun and gang crimes.

 

Assistant U.S. Attorneys Benjamin Bejar and Thomas Calhoun-Lopez are prosecuting the case.

 

Defendants’ Information:                                                                                                                  

MARVELL VOSHON JEFFERSON, a/k/a “Vo,” a/k/a “Lil Vo,” 24

Saint Paul, Minn.

Convicted:

  • Conspiracy – Felon in possession of a firearm, 1 count

Sentenced:

  • 60 months in prison
  • Three years of supervised release

 

SHELBY DELANE ASHFORD, JR., a/k/a “Two Times,” 24
Columbia Heights, Minn.

Convicted:

  • Conspiracy – Felon in possession of a firearm, 1 count

Sentenced:

  • 58 months in prison
  • Three years of supervised release

 

CASEY JEMAR DAVIS, a/k/a “Casey Jermar Davis,” a/k/a “K Chop,” 24
Saint Paul, Minn.

Convicted:

  • Conspiracy – Felon in possession of a firearm, 1 count

Sentenced:

  • 50 months in prison
  • Three years of supervised release

 
PHILLIP DWAYNE JACKSON, a/k/a “Go,” a/k/a “Kid Go,” 23
Lino Lakes, Minn.
 
Convicted:

  • Conspiracy – Felon in possession of a firearm, 1 count

Sentenced:

  • 60 months in prison
  • Three years of supervised release

 

NAKIA MARQUIRE MARTIN, a/k/a “Nakia Marquette Martin,” a/k/a “Freaky,” a/k/a “Freaky Nick,” 25

Moose Lake, Minn.

Convicted:

  • Conspiracy – Felon in possession of a firearm, 1 count

Sentenced:

  • 55 months in prison
  • Three years of supervised release

 

PIERRE CORTEZ JENKINS, 23, a/k/a “Pistol,” 23

Minneapolis, Minn.

Convicted:

  • Conspiracy – Felon in possession of a firearm, 1 count

Sentenced:

  • 48 months in prison
  • Three years of supervised release

 

CARMELO MANUEL MARRERO, a/k/a “Melo,” a/k/a “Mello,” 23

Maplewood, Minn.

Convicted:

  • Conspiracy – Felon in possession of a firearm, 1 count
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