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standing tallfrom the Bailey Avenue in the Bronx to Bryant Street, in deep ass South Brooklyn: “The Wild Cowboys started in the late 1980s in the Washington Heights section of Manhattan. Two Dominican Brothers, Lenny and Nelson Sepulveda, grew up on a block where a crack cocaine crew called ‘Coke Is It’ held court. The young boys were impressed by how much money crack brought in. They started as low-level dealers but left that crew when the NYPD brought down the major players.

The Sepulvedas took what they had learned and started their own crack empire, called the Red Top Crew, made up of friends they had grown up with. Washington Heights is near the George Washington Bridge— making it easily accessible to the suburbs of New Jersey— and they had quite a clientele. The brothers expanded their operation into the South Bronx and took over a block near Beekman Avenue and 138th Street, turning it into a drug supermarket.

This was the start of seven years of terror. The NYPD estimated that the Wild Cowboys were responsble for more than a hundred murders. They killed rival drug dealers, crackheads that kingsbridge glaretried to beat them with short money, witnesses that the cops were trying to work and innocent hardworking folks caught in the crossfire. Sometimes they killed just to show they could. Four members of the gang once took a man they felt had disrespected them into nearby St. Mary’s Park and disemboweled them with switchblades.”

—C.J. Sullivan, from Wild Tales from the Police Blotter (Lyons Press); once more with emphasis, for One Night Only— tonight!!— C.J. will be reading at Rocky Sullivan’s, 34 Van Dyke Street, in Red Hook, South Brooklyn, U.S.A. We’re pretty sure he has no beef with the Brooklyn House of Detention, & neither does WWIB.

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