Five alleged members and associates of a neighborhood-based Jersey City gang were charged today for their roles in two gang-related shootings.
Shaquan Rush, aka “Nut,” aka “Sha,” 21; Darby Shirden, aka “GoHard,” aka “GH,” 21; and Jeremy Perez, aka “Smoov,” aka “JSmoov,” 23, all of Jersey City and pictured above, are each charged by complaint with one count of murder in aid of racketeering, one count of attempted murder in aid of racketeering, and two counts of discharging a firearm during and in relation to a crime of violence.
Devon Tutten, aka “Joker,” 24; and Tyree Witherspoon, aka “Surf,” aka “Sonny,” 29, both of Jersey City, were also each charged with one count of murder in aid of racketeering and one count of discharging a firearm during and in relation to a crime of violence.
The defendants will make their initial appearances at a date to be determined.
According to U.S. Attorney Philip R. Sellinger and the complaint, Rush, Shirden, Perez, Tutten, and Witherspoon are all associated with neighborhood-based street gangs in Jersey City – specifically, a street gang that operates in the area of Rutgers Avenue and Triangle Park.
On April 1, 2020, in retaliation for the murder of Damone Smith, 25, a high-ranking Rutgers Avenue gang member on March 31, 2020, Rush, Shirden, and Perez traveled to the territory of rival gang members that associate with the Salem Lafayette Apartments and opened fire on a group of people on the street.
Two victims were shot, including one 18-year-old male victim associated with the Salem Lafayette street gang and Stephanie Jacques, an innocent 17-year-old girl who happened to be walking down the street.
Jacques was rushed to the Jersey City Medical Center, treated and released, even though she felt light-headed, according to a published report. The following day, the girl collapsed in he mother’s arms and died as a result of her gunshot wound.
On April 4, 2020, in retaliation for an attempted shooting on April 3, 2020, Tutten and Witherspoon traveled to the territory of rival gang members that associate with Wilkinson Avenue and opened fire on a group of people on the street.
An individual associated with the Wilkinson street gang was shot in the head and pronounced dead shortly thereafter.
The charge of murder in aid of racketeering activity carries a mandatory punishment of death or life in prison without the possibility of parole.
For their respective charges for discharging a firearm during and in relation to a crime of violence, all five defendants face mandatory minimum terms of 10 years in prison and a maximum sentence of life, which must run consecutively to any term of imprisonment imposed on any other charges.
For their respective charges for attempted murder in aid of racketeering, Rush, Shirden, and Perez also face additional terms of imprisonment of up to 10 years.