A Baltimore gang member with a rather unusual street name will be spending even more time in prison, possibly for the rest of his life, WBFF-TV is reporting.
“Butt Juice,” or more accurately, Lamont Jones, was convicted Tuesday of conspiracy to take part in racketeering and conspiracy to distribute and possess with intent to distribute narcotics.
Jones is a member of the violent Up Da Hill (UDH) gang in the city’s impoverished Cherry Hill neighborhood. And despite the humorous name of one of their members, there’s nothing funny about them, according to a press release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office.
“UDH members and associates used violence and intimidation to protect themselves, the UDH organization, and their control of the drug trade in part of Cherry Hill.”
Jones, for his part, associated with gang members who committed home invasions and armed robberies in order to fund their control of the drug trade in the neighborhood. Further, the gang maintained control by shooting and stabbing anyone who tried to interfere, according to federal prosecutors.
As for how much Butt Juice had to do with all of that remains a matter of dispute. Already at the time of his conviction on racketeering charges, he was behind bars, according to the Baltimore Sun, for a 2012 shooting.
Prosecutors also said that Jones stabbed a “snitch” in 2006; shot two members of a rival gang in 2007; murdered a rival gang member in 2011; and killed a rival drug dealer in 2012 – the murder for which he’s currently doing time. Prosecutors also said he sold heroin, crack cocaine, and other narcotics.
Jones’ attorney, Alfred Guillaume, called into question the credibility of the witnesses against his client. Specifically, almost all of them were prison snitches who would say anything in order to reduce their sentences.
“It’s the standard practice in federal court, they’re looking for time off from their sentence.”
Other witnesses, he said, were members of rival gangs, likely looking to get their rival behind bars.
According to a 2016 Baltimore Sun report, so wracked with gang violence was Cherry Hill that at one time a shooting broke out at a so-called “truce party” between rival gangs. Since 2013, however, federal authorities have been rounding up gang members, over three dozen of them, and started prosecuting them on various crimes.
Nowadays, things have quieted down in the predominantly black neighborhood, and the community is experiencing a resurgence, says community activist Michael Middleton.
“This is a community working to flip the script.”