Alan Gathright, KMGH-TV (Denver), December 4, 2009
Black gangs roaming downtown Denver often vented their hatred for white victims before assaulting and robbing them during a four-month crime wave, according to interviews and court records obtained by 7NEWS.
“I hate you f–ing white people,” said a black woman in a large group of black men, according to the victim who was beaten up as he and three buddies left a LoDo bar after midnight on Aug. 30.
“F—- you, white boys,” the woman added, according to the 25-year-old Westminster victim, who spoke to 7NEWS Friday.
“Why do you hate white people?” the man recalled asking. “That’s when I got hit. They beat the crap out of me,” he added, saying that 15 to 20 men beat him to the ground.
“They just swarmed you,” said the man who curled up on the ground to shield his face. “You basically just had to protect yourself and hope they didn’t kill you.”
The victim, who suffered bruised ribs and a cut head, said he was protected by a padded motorcycle jacket. He asked that his name be withheld for his safety.
A couple dozen arrest warrant affidavits unsealed Friday offer chilling insights into the 26 racially-motivated “blitz attacks,” which stretched from July 17 to Nov. 17.
One unidentified suspect told police “that the members of his gang earn status in the gang by beating up ‘white dudes,'” according to court records. He added that the gangs targeted “drunk white guys,” exiting bars and nightclubs in the entertainment district.
The suspects allegedly bragged about knocking out white victims with one punch to the head. Victims lying on the ground were “stomped” and even tossed through glass windows.
Several of the 35 young male and female suspects arrested by police recently said the gangs often targeted lone white and Hispanic men because they didn’t “fight back” and they had money, iPods and other valuable gadgets that attackers coveted.
Another goal: to drive whites away from their downtown turf, including a hip-hop nightclub, according to an arrest warrant affidavit.
The gangs “own that area,” one suspect told police.
Police spokesman Sonny Jackson denied that police delayed warning the public for seven weeks to avoid frightening visitors to the popular and lucrative downtown entertainment district.
He said police had to confirm “a pattern of behavior” before going public.
But police reports say the gang attack pattern was identified during the summer as the department deployed uncover teams and used surveillance cameras to identify the assailants.
“Part of the MO involved the group of suspects, usually African American males, sending a party, possibly an African American female, to identify the victim,” [an] officer wrote. “This is done by (the woman) talking with or standing with the victim. A suspect, generally male, from the group will step forward and hit the victim hard, knocking him down. Other members of the group will then emerge and begin participating in beating the victim.”
As police pursued the massive investigation involving 35 suspects and dozens of victims, investigators asked the young blacks why they targeted whites.
“Because they got a lot of money,” suspect Allen Ford, 18, allegedly told police. Other suspects echoed that simple rationale.
Ford, who was the last suspect arrested in a major police sweep in the past two weeks, allegedly told investigators earlier that he was upset how the robbery spoils were divvied up among members of the Rolling 60s Crips gang and the Black Gangster Disciples gang, according to the arrest affidavits.
Ford, who was arrested Thursday, allegedly griped about “other people getting bigger stuff than me that I would really like to have in my life,” according to the records.
At times, older men would chastise young gang members, saying, “Y’all make it seem like a big deal for y’all to be knocking out white people,” suspect Denita Mayfield told police. “They all brag about beating up white people.”
But the attackers used more than their fists. “The series of crimes has also involved the use of a gun and knife,” a police report said.
One male victim recalled a black woman approaching him on the street and saying something he couldn’t hear.
“As he was attempting to clarify what had been said to him, a black male came up and stated, ‘What the f– did you say to my girl?'” a detective wrote in an arrest affidavit.
Instantly, the victim was punched.
As he was pounded with blows, the victim said he heard a woman voice shouting, “Get that white boy!” according to an arrest affidavit.
Kendall Austin, 18, allegedly told police that the street gangs “own that area,” referring to the 1400 block of 19th Street.
He said they were especially possessive of the Bash nightclub at 19th and Blake streets, saying their purpose was to “keep white people from going to ‘The Bash’ and to ‘let people know not to come downtown without their friends for protection.'”