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Gang leader sentenced to life for Flatbush murder

June 25, 2021 Brooklyn Eagle Staff
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Larry Pagett, the East Coast leader of the Eight Trey Crips street gang, was sentenced to life imprisonment on Thursday by United States District Judge William F. Kuntz II in Brooklyn Federal Court for murdering a member of a rival gang in Flatbush.

Pagett, a Brooklyn resident, was convicted by a jury of murder in aid of racketeering in October 2018 following an eight-day trial.

The Eight Trey Crips were based in and around the Flatbush Gardens (formerly Vanderveer Estates) housing complex. The Crips and the Folk Nation, a rival street gang, had been engaged in a deadly feud over territory in Brooklyn for years, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

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On Aug. 28, 2015, Pagett encountered Chrispine Philip, also known as “Droppa,” inside the Buda Hookah Lounge on Flatbush Avenue. Philip was a member of the rival Folk Nation, and Pagett blamed him for the murder of an Eight Trey Crips gang member in Trinidad in the Spring of 2015.

Pagett pulled out a gun, shot Philip multiple times and ended his life with a final bullet to the back of his head, the U.S. Attorney’s Office said. A bystander in the crowded nightclub was also shot in the stomach and arm but survived. The murder was recorded on video surveillance cameras inside the club.

Brooklyn Federal Court Judge William Kuntz II. Eagle file photo by Rob Abruzzese

Jacquelyn M. Kasulis, acting United States attorney for the Eastern District of New York; William F. Sweeney, Jr., Assistant Director-in-Charge, FBI New York Field Office; and Dermot F. Shea, commissioner, NYPD, announced the sentence.

“Larry Pagett will deservedly spend the rest of his life behind bars for brazenly committing an execution-style, gang-related murder inside a lounge in Brooklyn,” stated Acting U.S Attorney Kasulis. “This Office will continue working tirelessly with our law enforcement partners to eradicate the murderous violence of street gangs like the Eight Trey Crips and end their wanton disregard for human life.”

The government’s case is being handled by the Office’s Organized Crime and Gangs Section. Assistant United States Attorneys Patrick T. Hein and Mathew S. Miller are in charge of the prosecution.

This case was brought as part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), a program bringing together all levels of law enforcement and the communities they serve to reduce violent crime and make neighborhoods safer. As part of the program, U.S. Attorneys’ Offices work in partnership with federal, state, local and tribal law enforcement and their local communities to develop locally-based strategies to reduce violent crime.

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