Harford County Narcotics Task Force Dismantle Bloods
(Harford County, Md) — On September 6, 2005 members of the Harford County Narcotics Task Force assisted by agents from the FBI and ATF and members of the Maryland State Police executed five search and seizure warrants that detectives say are significant in helping to dismantle the Bloods gang organization and curtail drug activity in Edgewood. Today’s warrants are the result of a 10-month undercover operation by police and Federal agents.
Shortly after 5am, detectives served search warrants at 1851 Edgewater Drive, apartments C, E, G, and H; and 1861 K Edgewater Drive both addresses located in the Village at Lakeview Apartment Complex. Narcotics detectives say 1851 Edgewater Drive was an area where Bloods would frequent and conduct open-air drug sales. Officers made hand-to-hand drug buys and developed information on gang members and gang leaders. Over time their efforts have paid off as members of the gang, known as 9 Tre’ Gangsta or Gangsta Blood Warriors, have been arrested and jailed for various drug and weapons offenses.
Arrested and charged today were Denise Stewart, 41, and Antijuan Johnson, 29, both of 1851E Edgewater Drive, Edgewood. Each was charged with possession, possession with intent to distribute cocaine. Recovered from their apartment were 52 individual bags of crack cocaine having a street value of $1,050. They are currently being held in the Harford County Detention Center pending a hearing before a District Court Commissioner. Stewart and Johnson are known associates of gang members. A 380-caliber handgun, $2900.00 cash and small amount of marijuana was recovered from 1851C Edgewater Drive and police found CDS paraphernalia while searching 1851 H. Charges are pending in those two recoveries.
Harford County Sheriff’s Office Intelligence officers report although they have identified approximately 90 individuals as gang members, associates or recruits, they are focused on twenty-seven individuals who make up the organization. Police have been tracking most of these individuals since early 2004 when gang activity had begun to emerge. Many were unknown to police and as the gangs evolved their roles became more defined. Of the twenty-seven, ten have been identified as leaders of the local Bloods. These ten, detectives say, ran the day-to-day operations while the remaining seventeen are considered soldiers. The Bloods are reported to be street level dealers primarily trafficking in crack cocaine and marijuana. While they can be found in other areas of the County one of their bases of operations was 1851 Edgewater Drive. Detectives are continuing their investigation into other known Blood hangouts.
Top-level members of the Bloods identified by the Harford County Narcotics Task Force are Eric Barnett, 26, of 3488 Albantowne Way, Edgewood, Maryland, who is the reported leader of the Bloods and whom detectives say came here from New York to start the Bloods in Harford County. Barnett’s second in command, Eddie Kalie Martin, 24, of 634 Harborside Drive, Joppa, is currently incarcerated in New York. Police have also identified Sathrie Zach Robinson, 19, of 513 Meadowood Drive, Edgewood as another Blood General who is currently incarcerated in the Harford County Detention Center and Josh Wary Barmer, 18, of 1230 Bush Road, a lieutenant in Barnett’s organization also incarcerated in the Harford County Detention Center. Devin Milbourne, 21, of 1643 Candlewood Drive, Edgewood is wanted on an open warrant by the Sheriff’s Office for Failure to Appear. Although police have no charges against them at this time, they do note that several other Blood Generals, including a 17 year-old boy, have been identified. Detectives have also said that these individuals, like so many other Blood members, are frequently arrested thus allowing police to more effectively track these gang members. Police have also noted with the intense pressure applied to these gangs by uniformed patrol officers, members of the Sheriff’s Gang Suppression Unit and undercover police officers that many known associates or recruits have shied away from the gang or left the area.
Task Force members say Eric Barnett was arrested by Harford County Sheriff’s deputies on September 5th on Albantowne Way in Edgewood on a Federal arrest warrant issued by the United States Attorney’s Office for weapons and drug violations. Federal warrants for drugs and weapons have also been filed against Martin and for Robinson who Sheriff’s deputies say was Barnett’s third in command.
Sheriff R. Thomas Golding said that he is pleased with the efforts of law enforcement to take down this gang and reduce local violence and drug trafficking. “Our efforts were intense and we knew whether we arrested them as a group or one at a time the organization would start to crumble”, Golding said. Golding noted that through a series of search warrants and arrest warrants executed during the past several months police kept picking away at their organizational structure. “We knew, and have known for awhile who these people were and I think they knew we knew,” Golding said. “But we needed the time”, he added, “to fully develop our case and it kept them off guard.” “We know they’ll try and come back”, Golding said, adding, “But our investigation won’t stop here.” “It will continue until they understand gang activity won’t be tolerated in our County”, he said.
Sheriff Golding said he fully appreciates the help and cooperation of the Bel Air, Aberdeen, and Havre de Grace Police Departments, the Maryland State Police, DEA, ATF, FBI and the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Baltimore. “No one police department can do this by themselves. We were successful because everyone had a role and were instrumental in this investigation,” he said.