United States v. Burden, No. 03-1727-cr (2d Cir. March 31, 2010) (Hall, Livingston, Gibson, CJJ)
From 1997 to 2001, Kelvin Burden, ran a crack cocaine ring in Norwalk, Connecticut, with the help of several of his brothers, two of whom were named David, and a few of his friends. The gang’s activities grew increasingly violent. Throughout 1998 and 1999 there were fatal encounters with members of a rival gang, the Hill Crew; also, in 1999, Burden gang members shot at two of their own, killing one and leaving the other a paraplegic.
The defendants were convicted of racketeering, drug charges and multiple VCAR counts, and received sentences ranging from eighty-eight months to life.
Their principal arguments on appeal were that the evidence was insufficient to establish that the Burden gang was an “enterprise” and that its activities constituted a “pattern.” The circuit affirmed.
First, the defendants asserted that the evidence …