Tuesday, 8 December 2009

Bloods street gang accused of a gang-hit slaying

One of three alleged members of the Bloods street gang accused of a gang-hit slaying was brought to Lackawanna County Court on Monday under heavy security to enter a guilty plea to first-degree murder.The deal fell apart after Jeffery Future asked for more time to review hundreds of pages of documents investigators had compiled against him.Though Mr. Future had agreed to plead guilty, he told Judge Carmen Minora, through his attorney, he first wants to review the 600 to 700 pages of documents police have assembled in their investigation into the death of Allen Fernandez, another Bloods member, whose body was found July 30, shot 12 times with several different weapons on Snake Road in Ransom Twp.First Assistant District Attorney Gene Talerico said after the aborted court hearing that Mr. Future "indicated he wanted additional time to contemplate his decision to enter a plea to first-degree murder, to honor the agreement he made with the commonwealth."
Beside asking for more time, Mr. Future's attorney, James Elliott, said he wants investigators to stop reading Mr. Future's mail. Mr. Talerico said the court has already ruled on the issue."We filed a motion with the court and the motion was granted," Mr. Talerico said.Judge Carmen Minora said he would allow Mr. Future and Mr. Elliott "six or seven weeks" to review the documents.Outside the courtroom, Mr. Elliott said he only received the documents last week through a process called "discovery." He also said Judge Minora said he would rule on the request about the mail after Mr. Elliott files a motion.Mr. Future, 25, was arrested along with Christian Kenyon, 17, and Tonie Future, 18, who were students at West Scranton High School. According to court documents, the Future brothers said they were ordered to kill Mr. Fernandez because he was disloyal within subsets of the Bloods street gang. Police say all three suspects allegedly shot Mr. Fernandez. The gang member who allegedly ordered the execution-style murder has not been identified.Before sending Mr. Future back to prison, Judge Minora gave him a warning about any possible future delays in courtroom proceedings.
"I won't let you run the show here," Judge Minora said. "I will be reasonable, to a point."If Mr. Future still has not decided whether he wants to enter a guilty plea, Judge Minora said, "Then I will set a trial date."By pleading guilty to first-degree murder and not going to trial, Mr. Future would escape a possible death sentence, which a jury could impose if it found him guilty of first-degree murder, Mr. Talerico said.


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