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Brother of slain NYC hoops star sentenced for revenge murder of gang rival

June 26, 2016  |  Posted by: JammedUp Staff
Brother of slain NYC hoops star sentenced for revenge murder of gang rival

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A purported gang member was sentenced to decades behind bars on Friday for killing a rival in retaliation for the 2011 slaying of his sister, a New York City high school hoops star.

A judge sentenced 20-year-old Taylonn Murphy, an active member of the 3 Staccs crew out of Harlem, to 50-years-to-life for the murder of Walter Sumter, a member of the Make it Happen Boys/Money Avenue gang.

Prosecutors said the death of Tayshana Murphy, who was gunned down in 2011 trying to run for safety amid the gang violence, was the result of an ongoing gang war between both sets of crews from two Harlem housing projects. Two men were convicted in the slaying and sentenced to 25-years-to-life in prison.

According to the New York Times, authorities arrested Murphy in June 2014 along with 103 other members of the Washingtonville and Grant Houses in what was hailed at the time as the largest gang takedown in the city’s history.

During Thursday’s sentencing hearing, Manhattan Supreme Court Justice Edward McLaughlin ripped into Murphy, who sat listening while holding rosary beads, which the judge suggested was meant to play to the jury.

Taylon Murphy was sentenced to 50 years-to life in prison on Friday

Taylonn Murphy was sentenced to 50 years-to-life in prison on Friday

“You were warned, you were on probation for over a year, during which the majority of events (in this case) happened,” McLaughlin said. “A teacher, a coach, that judge, maybe other judges who you’ve encountered, almost certainly a probation officer tried to communicate to you what would happen if you didn’t straighten out.”

“Do you think any of them or some of them or none of them didn’t think maybe it was sacrilegious and a violation of their observances?” he said.

Manhattan Assistant District Attorney Andrew Warshawer also blasted Murphy during the hearing for stoking the violence in the community that claimed the promising life of his sister.

“This defendant and his co-conspirators, 3 Staccs gang members, knew that gunshots killed and understood what illegal weapons did, they knew better than anyone,” Warshawer said.

The prosecutor also argued that the reckless groups of young men terrorized what could be a peaceful, productive community, The New York Daily News reported

“Ninety-five percent of the people from the Grant Houses and the Manhattanville Houses do not engage in this mindless egomaniacal gang beef,” he added.

In an impact statement, the victim’s father, Walter Sumpter Sr., explained the heartbreak his family has had to endure since his son’s death saying. “It is not just my wife, and me that lost our only son, Walter was a brother to his sister and an uncle to his niece and nephews.”

Sumpter Sr. said he would forgive Murphy and pray for his family, but hoped he would repent during his time in prison.

“We realize our family is not the only family that’s suffering because of this horrible act of violence that has been committed,” he said.

During a brief statement to the court, Murphy uttered a few small words of sympathy to Sumpter’s family before declaring his innocence.

“I would ask the court to rehear my case because I’m innocent,” he said.

Courthouse security was beefed up for the sentencing, which drew a courtroom packed with Murphy’s and Sumter’s family and friends.

Prosecutors say the gang war between the two crews resulted in two shooting deaths, 19 non-fatal gun injuries, and another 50 incidents involving gun violence.

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