FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) – United States District Court Judge Damon R. Leichty has sentenced three individuals for committing a violent crime in aid of racketeering, the Department of Justice (DOJ) announced. The individuals are members of “2500,” a Fort Wayne street gang who engaged in drug and firearms trafficking with a street gang based in Bloomington.
William D. Beamon, aka “Lil’ Will,” 28, of Fort Wayne was sentenced to a total of 360 months (30 years) in prison, followed by two years of supervised release.
Kyombe D. Bolden, “aka Pudge,” 30, of Bloomington, Indiana, was sentenced to a total of 324 months (27 years) in prison, followed by two years of supervised release.
Ronnie D. Burrus, “aka Ronnie Robinson, Ronnie Burris and Yung Ron,” 28, of Fort Wayne and Bloomington, Indiana, was sentenced to a total of 360 months (30 years) in prison, followed by two years of supervised release.
The DOJ said that in 2020, all three of the individuals entered pleas of guilty to:
- Two counts of attempted assault with a dangerous weapon in aid of racketeering
- One count of assault with a dangerous weapon in aid of racketeering
- Three counts of discharging a firearm during and in relation to a crime of violence
A fourth defendant, Demetri D. Beachem, has also pled guilty and is currently scheduled for sentencing on Nov. 12, the DOJ said.
“This case was the first use of the federal racketeering statutes against street gangs in the Fort Wayne area and it will not be the last. Today’s sentences should send a strong message that criminal organizations such as the one the defendants were members of will not be tolerated in our communities, and the FBI and our law enforcement partners will continue our efforts to remove those who participate in this violent activity from our streets,” said FBI Indianapolis Special Agent in Charge Paul Keenan.
According to documents in this case, gang members of 2500 and Grit Gang were engaged in drug and firearms trafficking and were responsible for violent criminal gang activity. On Oct. 4, 2014, the defendants received an insulting social media video from rival gang members and reacted by hunting down the rival gang members.
The DOJ said the defendants found them at a home at the intersection of Caroline and Suttenfield Streets in Fort Wayne. When the rival gang members exited the house, the defendants began shooting, hitting the house and a neighboring house with gunfire. Approximately 50 shots were fired, exposing people in both houses to significant danger.
“One victim suffered only a minor wound, but the dangerous actions of the defendants risked the lives of many innocent bystanders and children in both houses,” the DOJ said.
This multi-agency investigation was conducted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s Safe Streets Gang Task Force in Fort Wayne, which includes the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Allen County Police Department, the Fort Wayne Police Department, and the Indiana State Police. Also assisting with this investigation were the Bloomington Police Department, the Indiana State Police Laboratory Division, and the Fort Wayne Police Department’s Detective Bureau and Gang and Violent Crimes Unit. This case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Anthony W. Geller and Stacey R. Speith.