CONTACT: Barbara Burns
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BUFFALO, N.Y. - U.S. Attorney James P. Kennedy, Jr. announced today that a federal jury has convicted Kenneth Pettway, Jr., 34, of Buffalo, NY, of conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute, and to distribute, 280 grams or more of crack cocaine, and possession with intent to distribute heroin and cocaine, possession of a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime, and being a felon in possession of a firearm. The charges carry a mandatory minimum penalty of 40 years in prison, a maximum of life and a fine of $5,000,000.
Assistant U.S. Attorneys Michael P. Felicetta and Seth T. Molisani, who handled the prosecution of the case, stated that the defendant was a leader of the Bailey Boys Gang, a violent criminal gang which operates in an area of the City of Buffalo bounded by Winspear Avenue, the Kensington Expressway, Eggert Road and Main Street. The gang is believed to be responsible for multiple acts of violence, including assaults, shootings, murders, and armed robberies.
As a leader of the Bailey Boys Gang, the defendant supplied illegal narcotics, including crack cocaine, heroin and marijuana, to members and associates of the gang for further distribution in the City of Buffalo. Pettway also provided multiple firearms to members and associates to be used for protection of gang territory, drugs and drug proceeds.
The evidence presented by the government during trial included a rap video entitled “Picked up in a Raid,” which the defendant created and posted to his You Tube account. The video, which purports to be based on a true story, contains images and lyrics related to the defendant’s drug distribution, the silencing of snitches, and the execution of a search warrant by law enforcement officers.
On January 18, 2012, a search warrant was executed at the residence of Demetrius Black residence on Roosevelt Avenue. Officers seized two firearms, heroin, cocaine, marijuana, scales, baggies, and other drug paraphernalia.
Pettway is one of 15 Bailey Boys Gang leaders, members, and associates charged in this case. To date, 14 have been convicted.
“Kenneth Pettway, Jr. was a leader of a neighborhood street gang whose members and associates engaged in narcotics trafficking, robberies, and acts of violence,” stated United States Attorney Kennedy. “Let there be no mistake, my Office, together with our partners in federal, state, and local law enforcement, are making headway in our ongoing effort to wipe out these gangs and the drugs and gun violence which constitute their stock-in-trade. Sooner or later, the young men joining these violent, drug-dealing neighborhood gangs need to realize that it is a big world out there, that they are the captains of their own destiny, and that the only place allegiance to these gangs and their leaders, such as Kenneth Pettway, will take them is to an early grave or to federal prison.”
Today’s verdict is the result of an ongoing investigation into the activities of the Bailey Boys Gang and other criminal gangs that is being conducted by the United States Attorney’s office in close cooperation with the Erie County District Attorney’s Office, under the direction of District Attorney John J. Flynn; and in conjunction with the Buffalo Police Department, under the direction of Police Commissioner Byron Lockwood; the Federal Bureau of Investigation Safe Streets Task Force, under the Direction of Special Agent-in-Charge Gary Loeffert; the Erie County Sheriff’s Office, under the direction of Sheriff Timothy Howard; the Drug Enforcement Administration, under the direction of Special Agent-in-Charge James J. Hunt, and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives, under the direction of Special Agent-in-Charge Ashan Benedict, New York Field Division.
Sentencing is scheduled for September 5, 2018, at 11:00 a.m. before U.S. District Judge Thomas J. McAvoy who presided over the trial.
Department of Justice
Office of the U.S. Attorney
Western District of New York