NORFOLK – A local man was sentenced Thursday to three consecutive life terms plus an additional 40 years in prison for his leadership role in a racketeering conspiracy, multiple murders, multiple attempted murders, and various drug and gun crimes, all as part of his leadership of the Nine Trey Gangsters Bloods gang.
According to court documents, Antonio Simmons, aka “Murdock,” was a high-ranking leader of a group of Portsmouth and Norfolk-based members of the Nine Trey Gangsters, a Bloods gang affiliated with the United Blood Nation.
Simmons, 41, and five other members and associates of the gang were charged for their roles in a spate of extreme violence in December 2015 that ended with five people dead and four others shot during seven separate shootings that crossed nearly every city in South Hampton Roads, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Virginia.
“Simmons and his gang committed horrific violence across nearly every community in Hampton Roads,” said G. Zachary Terwilliger, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District. “Their actions shattered five families and took parents away from their children. That they did these acts because the gang needed money and to enhance their reputation speaks volumes about what gangs really are – as opposed to what they claim to be when they recruit young men and women in our neighborhoods. Where gangs go, depravity and senseless violence follows. I would like to especially thank the police departments in every South Hampton Roads city for their assistance in bringing these men to justice.”
Nearly all of the victims in the case were unaffiliated with the Nine Trey Gangsters or any other gang. They included two mothers of young children and one grandmother who was murdered, along with her boyfriend, because gang members believed she was cooperating with the police in an investigation of another shooting carried out by a Nine Trey member just weeks before, prosecutors said.
Simmons was found guilty of the two murders that happened during attempted robberies he ordered his men to commit. By the end of December, two of the gang’s primary shooters, Anthony Foye, aka “Ace,” and Nathaniel Mitchell, aka “Savage,” were in a competition to see who could gain a reputation within the gang for shooting the most people, prosecutors said.
To even the score the men were keeping, Mitchell gunned down a woman walking home from her job at the Norfolk International Airport four days before Christmas. The evidence at trial showed that Simmons bragged about the shootings carried out by Foye and Mitchell.
In late 2015, Simmons ordered Foye, Mitchell, Alvaughn Davis, aka “LB,” and Malek Lassiter, aka “Leeko,” to kill high-ranking members of a rival Hampton Roads-based Nine Trey Gangsters “line.”
When the men were unable to find two of their targets, they drove to the house of a third man they planned to shoot. When the woman who opened the door told them the man was not at home, they shot her six times, prosecutors said.
The woman survived the attack.
While the men fled from the scene, they fired several rounds at witnesses looking out of their windows. Foye and Mitchell were arrested after robbing a gas station store later the same night.
Simmons, Mitchell, and Lassiter were convicted on all counts after a seven-week jury trial. Foye and Davis pleaded guilty before trial, and another associate of the gang, Donte Brehon, pleaded guilty in a separate case. Simmons was the last defendant to be sentenced. The men charged, and the sentences they received, are as follows:
|Name||Age, Hometown||Convictions||Total Sentence|
|Antonio Lee Simmons, aka “Murdock,” “Doc”||41, Norfolk||Racketeering conspiracy; Heroin distribution conspiracy; Murder in Aid of Racketeering (2); Attempted murder in aid of racketeering in aid of racketeering (4); Assault with a dangerous weapon (3); Use of a firearm resulting in death (2); Use of a firearm during a crime of violence (4); various other firearm and drug offenses||Life plus 60 years|
|Nathaniel Tyree Mitchell, aka “Savage”||26, Portsmouth||Racketeering conspiracy; Murder in aid of racketeering (4); Attempted murder in aid of racketeering (6); Assault with a dangerous weapon in aid of racketeering (5); Use of a firearm resulting in death (4); Use of a firearm during a crime of violence (6)||5 Life sentences plus 50 years|
|Anthony Foye, aka “Ace,” “Bull”||27, Portsmouth||Murder in aid of racketeering (4)||Life|
|Malek Lassiter, aka “Leeko”||23, Portsmouth||Racketeering conspiracy; Attempted murder in aid of racketeering (3); Assault with a dangerous weapon in aid of racketeering (2); Use of a firearm during a crime of violence (3)||35 years|
|Alvaughn Davis, aka “LB”||30, Portsmouth||Racketeering conspiracy; Use of a firearm resulting in death; Accessory after the fact to murder in aid of racketeering||45 years|
|Donte Brehon, aka “Dog Nutz”||37, Norfolk||Accessory after the fact to assault with a dangerous weapon in aid of racketeering; distribution and possession with intent to distribute heroin||13 years|