Cops on target: 39 busted in Staten Island drug & gun ring

  • By Kevin Sheehan and Jeane MacIntosh
  • Last Updated: 4:47 PM, August 13, 2013
  • Posted: 4:47 PM, August 13, 2013

Cops on Staten Island took down a violent drug-and-gun ring, arresting 39 players – including 25 with ties to the violent Bloods gang – on charges ranging from attempted murder to selling cocaine and stealing motorcycles, prosecutors announced today.

Six of the ring members also hired two hit men to kill another defendant -- but failed three times, according to the indictment.

Shatiek Daniels Facebook photo.
The 16-month probe was dubbed “Operation Mayberry” because one of the ringleaders went by the name “Opie,” but Staten Island DA Daniel Donovan said the dangerous crew was “nothing like” Andy Griffith’s loveable 1960s TV gang.

Christopher 'Opie' Dowd
“They are accused of committing crimes, conspiring to commit crimes that would shock and appall Sheriff Taylor,” Donovan said.

“These defendants wreaked havoc on Staten Island.”

Cops seized six guns, ammo, crack, marijuana and 22 kilos of coke in the investigation. Most of the coke was confiscated in Laredo, Texas, after it left Mexico bound for Staten Island, prosecutors said.

The guns came from Georgia, Donovan said.

"Some of these guns were about to be used to shoot other individuals,” he said, adding that three of the firearms were recovered during a car chase through Newark, NJ, two were found on a woman who was selling weapons for alleged drug dealer Shatiek “Sha-gotti” Daniels, and another was found in front of Daniels’ home.

Daniels, along with Kenneth “Shugs” Williams and four others, were indicted for running the guns from Georgia in a bid to kill Lawrence “L” Browning. The six hired two hit men, who botched the job three different times, prosecutors said.

Daniels and Williams wanted to rub out Browning over an outstanding debt -- and because Browning had made to moves on the girlfriend of another defendant, Jerry “Poe” Leverette, according to law enforcement sources.

Browning was also indicted for attempted murder in the sweeping takedown, because he slammed into Leverette with his car during one of the failed attempts on his own life, sources said.

Daniels -- who posts his own rap videos on Youtube, boasting “If I got a gun on me I shoot it. I got the bricks [drugs] too, I move it” – was also hit with drug charges.

Also busted on drug charges was career criminal Clinton “KC” James. He was shot and wounded by cops in March after he pinned a detective with his car during a drug bust, sources said.

Both James and Daniels were charged in 2003 with stealing $100,000 in jewelry and other items from the home of rap mogul Samuel “Tone” Barnes, records show.
Others arrests included Christopher “Opie” Dowd, who was charged with conspiring to distribute cocaine, conspiracy to steal and resell motorcycles and motorcycle parts and for heading a burglary ring that targeted Staten Island homes.

Dowd “spoke in code” with several co-defendants as they discussed their coke distribution and burglary plans, prosecutors said. gL9L