Uncle Luke, the man whose booty-shaking madness made the U.S. Supreme Court stand up for free speech, gets as nasty as he wants to be for Miami New Times. This week, Luke calls for the federal government to investigate gang bangers.
Across Miami-Dade County, black communities are under siege. Local gangs start beefs on social media and end them with gunfire and dead bodies. In the past three weeks, seven shootings in Coconut Grove, Liberty City, Overtown, and Miami Gardens have resulted in five dead and seven injured.
The only way to end it is by calling in a federal task force that can build federal cases against these terrorists. It has worked before. In 1999, a group led by the FBI put an end to the bloody war among several gangs, including the Boobie Boys and Cloud Nine, by rounding up all the gangbangers on racketeering and conspiracy charges. Within a year, all had been convicted and sentenced to long prison terms.
In the inner-city neighborhoods, criminals aren't afraid to go to jail. They know state prosecutors aren't using the 10-20-Life law meant to put away gun-toting thugs for a long, long time.
But they don't want to catch federal charges. The criminals know that the feds have a 90 percent conviction rate and that they will have to do at least 90 percent of the prison sentence they receive. Sixteen years ago, the feds did a great job cleaning the streets.
And it won't be hard to bust the shooters on federal charges. A majority of them start their beefs on Facebook. They threaten each other, and soon they show up in one another's neighborhoods, shooting the place up.
Twice, I've told Miami Police officials it's time to bring in the feds. Two years ago, I offered this suggestion to Chief Manuel Orosa during a meeting with then-Commissioner Michelle Spence-Jones. I raised the issue again last week at a town hall meeting about the shootings. The department should consult with Gerald Darling, the former assistant police chief who is now running the school police in Memphis, Tennessee. Darling was one of the leaders who worked closely with the feds to wipe out the gangs in the late '90s.
Yet police appear reluctant to hand anything over to the FBI and the U.S. Attorney's Office. These shootings won't stop until the cavalry arrives.
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Tune into Luke on The Andy Slater Show every Tuesday from 2 to 5 p.m. on Miami's Sports Animal 940 AM.