An incident where shots were fired at a Virginia State trooper in Danville last year might have been the result of a gang war that continued even after some accused members were caught up in a series of federal racketeering and murder cases, court documents reveal.
It was on Dec. 12, 2018, that Daviez Daquan Hairston unwittingly fired at an unmarked Virginia State Police car with an officer inside it. Hairston, 19, currently is serving a 10-year sentence for the firearms-related charges and driver Gregory James Gladden, 21, received a one-month sentence for reckless driving. Even though both men pleaded guilty to the incident in court, few details about what precipitated the shooting were made public.
But a search warrant filed by the FBI in U.S. District Court in Charlottesville states the shots Hairston fired at the undercover officer was preceded by a multitude of shootings into the homes of “targets currently under investigation in a related federal case.” These shootings, the search warrant states, occurred in Danville from Dec. 2 to 11.
“The shootings appeared to be gang-related and to involve opposing BLOODS sets,” FBI agent Stephen Duenas wrote in the search warrant. The warrant was filed to study the electronic data of phones found in the car Gladden drove as Hairston shot at the state trooper.
The federal court cases involve accused members of two Danville gangs — the Rollin 60s Crips and the Milla Bloods — who were indicted in June 2018 in connection with attempted murders, drug trafficking and the shooting death of Christopher Lamont Motley in 2016.
The search warrant notes how the investigation into the two gangs, which began in 2017, involves the FBI, Danville police, Pittsylvania County Sheriff’s Office, state police and other federal agencies.
In those court cases, federal prosecutors contend in 2016 and 2017, the Rollin 60s and the Millas agreed to cooperate after a series of shootings and a hit put on the leader of the Milla’s leader. A rival Bloods-affiliated gang, the Billys, intended to kill the Milla’s leader after being authorized by national Bloods leadership.
Tension between the gangs escalated until each competing side — the Millas, Rollin 60s and the Billys — had standing orders to shoot rival gang members on sight, according to federal court documents. So the Millas and Rollin 60s hatched a plan to ambush the leader of the Billy’s at the Southwyck Hills Apartments. In August 2016, a white van rolled into the apartment complex and gang members, who had surrounded the parking lot, opened fire, killing Motley, who was a passenger in the vehicle but not the target, documents state.
The trial against accused members of the Millas is set for January while the trial against accused members of the Rollin 60s is set for October.
Experts said it is not unheard of to have internal violence between members of the same gang.
“What happens a lot is that you’ll see intra-gang violence within factions,” said David Pyrooz, assistant professor of sociology at the University of Colorado Boulder and noted gang expert. “The idea of the enemy of my enemy is my friend is not uncommon.”
Organized crime and gang expert George Knox, of the National Gang Crime Research Center, said often times rival gangs will work together to fight a common enemy.
“Historically, it is not a very common phenomenon for rival gangs to work together for a common purpose, but it does happen,” he said. “It happens in a riot situation or under conditions of civil unrest.”
Because of the December 2018 shootings into homes of accused gang members, state and local police stepped up patrols in some Danville neighborhoods. It was the night of Dec. 12 that state police Special Agent E.W. Blackstock was on surveillance in an unmarked police car when he observed a red Dodge Charger nearby. The warrant states Blackstock followed the Charger because it had been seen around an earlier vehicle “containing BLOODS gang members.” This vehicle also contained a well-known member of the Crips, suspected of a 2018 homicide.
As the agent followed the vehicle, shots rang out. Hairston later told police he shot at the car because he thought he was being targeted by another Bloods set.
“Hairston further stated that he believed ‘the opps’ [which your affiant knows to mean the ‘opposition’ or opposing gang],” Duenas wrote in the search warrant. “Hairston further stated that he believed ‘the opps’ were members of ‘800’ [another BLOODS set] and believed they were going to shoot at him.”
Once the shooting stopped, Blackstock switched on his emergency lights and chased the car at high speed. The Charger ran off the road and crashed, with the occupants running away. Once backup arrived, police followed the footprints left in the snow by Hairston, Gladden and the three other suspects and arrest them.
The warrant stated once arrested, Hairston admitted to police his gang association.
“Hairston admitted he was a BLOODS gang member and identified the other occupants of the charger as ‘Bloods,’ except for Gladden,” the search warrant states.
Among the passengers in the car who ran and later was caught was 17-year-old Hikeem King, who was shot to death in a hail of bullets the afternoon of March 10 as he stood next to his car on Arnett Boulevard, Danville police confirmed. Court proceedings involving his slaying are ongoing.
Reach Quashon Avent at (434) 797-7983.