Gang leaders indicted in two murders

Gang affiliation alleged

Two alleged leaders of a bloody New Orleans street gang called the 39ers, which has ties to the infamous 3-N-G gang, were indicted last week for two years-old murders.

Gregory “Rabbit” Stewart and Darryl Franklin, who go by the street names “Brother” and “Breezy,” are accused of killing two men, one in 2010 and a second in 2011.

The Federal Bureau of Investigation’s New Orleans Gang Task Force arrested Franklin on Wednesday afternoon in Marerro.

Stewart has been in federal custody since 2011, awaiting trial on a separate and sprawling federal indictment accusing him and eight others of running a heroin-trafficking and murder ring.

An Orleans Parish grand jury last week indicted Stewart and Franklin on two additional counts of second-degree murder.

On April 12, 2010, they allegedly gunned down 25-year-old Quelton Broussard in the 2800 block of Clouet Street in the Desire neighborhood.

A year later, on Feb. 6, 2011, they allegedly shot 36-year-old Calvin Celestine as he sat in his car on the 10500 block of Curran Boulevard in New Orleans East.

Franklin, 29, was arrested at a home in Jefferson Parish on Wednesday afternoon, and booked into the Jefferson Parish Correctional Center.

Franklin has been arrested in New Orleans numerous times over the past decade, including on charges of attempted murder, aggravated battery, possession with intent to distribute heroin, cocaine and marijuana, illegal weapons charges, resisting arrest and drug trafficking.

Most of the charges were dismissed, and he has been sentenced to little jail time.

Stewart, 22, has been in federal custody in St. Charles Parish since 2011, when a federal grand jury charged him and eight others with a list of crimes, including conspiring to deal more a kilogram of heroin and killing a 25-year-old man during a drug deal.

That indictment alleged that Stewart and Evans “Easy” Lewis used a .40-caliber handgun and an assault rifle to cut down 25-year-old Gregory Keys on May 24, 2011, in St. Claude.

The feds assert Stewart is linked to Terrioues “T-Red” Owney, who has been implicated in the December 2011 slaying of toddler Kiera Holmes in the courtyard of the former B.W. Cooper housing project.

Owney is an alleged member of the so-called “3-N-G” gang, a notorious Central City drug trafficking organization accused of multiple murders, violence and witness intimidation. The list of bodies that law enforcement authorities say they have connected to the gang includes Omar Breaux, killed on Earhart Boulevard in 2009; Ricky Cheneau, found shot multiple times last fall on South Prieur Street; Jerome “Man Man” Hampton and rapper Renatta “Magnolia Shorty” Lowe, killed in 2010, along with others.

Nearly two dozen members of that group, named after their stomping grounds at 3rd and Galvez streets in Central City, have been indicted on state racketeering charges.

Authorities confirmed that the 39ers, who work Uptown and in the 9th Ward, are affiliated with Central City’s 3-N-G gang, though they are not one and the same.

Franklin and Stewart are scheduled to be arraigned before Orleans Parish Criminal District Court Judge Karen Herman next week.