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Gang member admits to 2012 MLK Park shootings as part of plea deal

Tariq Brown, a member of the Bailey Boys Gang, admitted Wednesday to firing into a crowd of people at Martin Luther King Park four years ago, killing one man and wounding four others.

Brown, 23, also admitted to three other attempted murders, all of them involving rival gang members, as part of a federal plea deal that includes a recommended sentence of 22 years in prison. He pleaded guilty to a racketeering conspiracy charge.

Arrested with several other Bailey Boys members, Brown was the one always suspected of pulling the trigger that day in May 2012 when 26-year-old Marquay Lee was killed and four others were injured. Police said Brown suspected rival gang members were attending a picnic at the park.

As part of his plea deal, according to Assistant U.S. Attorney Michael Felicetta, Brown also admitted to three other attempted murders the year before the MLK shootings.

“Some of the them were targeted members of rival gangs, is that correct?” U.S. District Judge William M. Skretny asked at one point.

“Yes, sir,” said Brown.

Except for the MLK shootings, the various shootings by Brown targeted the LRGP Crew, which the Bailey Boys saw as encroaching on their turf during the summer of 2011. The Bailey Boys operated in a neighborhood bounded by Winspear Avenue, the Kensington Expressway, Eggert Road and Main Street.

The rivalry eventually attracted the attention of the FBI’s Safe Streets Task Force, which includes the Buffalo Police and State Police, and a federal prosecution that dismantled both gangs.

“Tariq Brown’s admission in court that he menaced families at MLK park in May 2012 will not erase the pain that lingers from that day,” said Adam S. Cohen, special agent in charge of the FBI in Buffalo.

Brown has been in custody for four years.


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