It was only a matter of time…
We can’t keep our borders open to anyone who cares to cross over, offer them immunity from the law in sanctuary cities that basically give criminals the ability to move around freely and expect a positive result. We asked for it when most American citizens sat back and allowed Obama to bully our border agents into submission, while shaming our government officials and law enforcement agencies for daring to demand stricter immigration controls. There’s a good reason Donald J. Trump rose to the top of the packed GOP Presidential field when he mentioned building a wall on our southern border and clamping down on the insane flow of unvetted immigrants and refugees into the United States.
Hillary is on the same team as Obama when it comes to unchecked illegal immigration.
BRENTWOOD, N.Y. — Four dead teenagers. Two weeks. One town. And a ruthless gang, the authorities say, was most likely responsible for the toll. Again.
On Sept. 13, Nisa Mickens, 15, and her best friend, Kayla Cuevas, 16, were murdered, their battered bodies found near an elementary school here. A week later and just two miles away, the skeletal remains of two more teenagers — identified as Oscar Acosta, 19, and Miguel Garcia-Moran, 15 — were found in the woods near a psychiatric hospital. Oscar had been missing since May, Miguel since February. Their deaths have been ruled homicides.
Brentwood, a hardscrabble town of nearly 60,000 on Long Island, 40 miles east of Manhattan, has reached another crisis point. For nearly two decades, MS-13, a gang with roots in Los Angeles and El Salvador, has been terrorizing the town, the authorities say, especially its young people. Since 2009, its members have been accused of at least 14 murders, court and police records show.
School officials are scrambling. Police officers are searching. Students are frightened. Parents are anguished.
“It’s so hard, I’m hurting,” Eveylyn Rodriguez, the mother of Kayla, said last week. “I wish I could hold my daughter again.”
In her first interview since Kayla’s funeral, Ms. Rodriguez spoke measuredly about how her daughter had been bullied by gang members inside and outside of her high school.
“To me, it’s worse than it was before; it’s everywhere,” said Ms. Rodriguez, a 1987 graduate of Brentwood Ross High School, where her daughter was a student. “This is ridiculous,” she added. “We need some type of assistance to help our police officers here and see if they can come together to figure out a plan to make things better for the kids now.”
The path to such a plan, however, runs through a fractured Suffolk County. Its former police chief is headed to jail, its district attorney is under federal investigation and a Justice Department settlement mandated changes in the police department in 2013 after findings of bias against Latino residents.
Tensions simmer here because some residents say they believe an increase in Central American migrants to town has led to the increase in gang violence. According to 2014 census figures compiled by Queens College, Brentwood’s population is 68 percent Latino or Hispanic, with more than 17,000 residents claiming to be from El Salvador.
Brentwood has 4,400 high school students divided into two schools, and administrators say the environment is safe.
“Gang members rarely present themselves in the schools,” Richard Loeschner, the principal of Brentwood Ross High School, said. “If they do, we take care of that pretty quickly.”
But ultimately, he said, after acknowledging that the administration knew of about 20 to 25 students in the district with possible gang affiliations, there is only so much they can do.
“We can’t exclude a kid because we suspect they are in a gang,” Mr. Loeschner said. “That’s state and federal law that they are entitled to an education.”
Even before the girls’ murders, students were subject to random screenings with metal detectors, which have increased over the past few weeks, he added. There are no detectors at the entrances of either high school, however.
Some parents were concerned that the school’s response to the violence was not proactive enough. Dr. Levi McIntyre, the school superintendent, sent an email to parents warning their children not to wear royal blue, the color identified with MS-13, or clothes displaying the Salvadoran flag. A student on the way to school, he wrote, recently had his blue shirt torn off by gang members and burned.
MS-13 formed in Los Angeles in the 1980s by immigrants from El Salvador escaping civil war. The abbreviation stands for Mara Salvatrucha, which roughly translates to “Salvadoran street posse.”
Authorities say it has been in Suffolk County since around 1998, and is organized in cliques bearing names like the Brentwood Locos Salvatruchas. Leaders gather to discuss their lines of business — extortion, prostitution, robbery, drug dealing — and to authorize the killings of chavalas, or members of rival gangs like the Bloods and Crips, court papers say.
The recent murders have exacerbated disputes in the town over immigration policy, which Donald J. Trump, the Republican candidate for president, fueled during last week’s debate by saying that the gangs roaming the streets were made up of illegal immigrants.
“There’s been a huge influx, to be honest with you,” said Ray Mayo, the president of the Brentwood Association of Concerned Citizens, who added that he was upset over undocumented immigrants crowding rental properties. “It seems like a whole new set of gang members who have stirred the pot up.”
Two law enforcement authorities, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because of the continuing murder investigation, said that over the last several years the gang has sought to enlist recent immigrants from Central America because they are often more vulnerable to recruitment. For entire story: NYT’s