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Short North Posse Gang Members Indicted
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In what officials call the largest federal murder indictment in Ohio history, more than a dozen Columbus gang members face charges. A federal grand jury indicted 17 members of the so-called Short North Posse. WOSU reports on the two-year investigation by federal, state and local law enforcement.
Authorities say The Short North Posse used violence to intimidate and extort its victims and witnesses.
The suspects named in the 25-count indictment are accused of being members of the Posseâ€™s Homicide Squad and Cut Throat Committee.
Authorities say they were the enforcers â€“ â€œthe muscleâ€ â€“ murdering rival gang members, drug dealers and anyone who threatened the gangâ€™s enterprises and authority.
Ohio Southern District U.S. Attorney Carter Stewart said the indictment is a large blow to the gang which has been active since the 1990s.
â€œWe canâ€™t say that itâ€™s been decimated. We canâ€™t say that itâ€™s been dismantled. Thatâ€™s our goal. But I can tell you that theyâ€™ve taken a significant hit, especially on their enforcement side.
The crimes occurred around central Ohio including Columbus, Canal Winchester, Chillicothe, Pataskala, Pickerington and Zanesville from 2005 to 2012.
Stewart said to date, 12 of the 13 murders are unsolved. He said if the case goes to trial that could bring closure to many families.
â€œAnd I hope that it will enable other victims and empower other victims to come forward if they have a story because we are still investigating other murders,” Stewart said.
Fifteen of the 17 listed in the indictment are in police custody. Authorities continue to look for Ishmael Bowers, 32, who is indicted on two murder counts, as well as Tysin Gordon, 28, charged with racketeering-conspiracy.
If convicted, 11 of the 17 accused could face the death penalty.