Another mom denies gang existence, blasts Youngstown cops


For the second day in a row, the mother of one of 12 men accused of being a member of a West Side street gang said there is no gang.

Priscilla Sheppard, mother of 21-year-old Laytton Sheppard, who is accused of being a member of the E Block Gang, said her son and the others indicted with him have been friends since childhood and they are not part of a gang.

“My son is not in a gang,” she said Friday. “There is no E Block gang.”

Thursday another mother of one of the suspects said after nine of the alleged members were arraigned in Mahoning County Common Pleas Court that there was no gang and her son and her friends had known each other since childhood.

The accused members of the gang were secretly indicted by a grand jury May 15 on charges ranging from participating in a criminal gang, trafficking in counterfeit controlled substances, aggravated riot, felonious assault, trafficking in cocaine and trafficking in heroin.

They were issued superseding indictments Thursday just before they were arraigned.

Priscilla Sheppard her son and the others have all grown up together and are not part of a gang.

“He’s known them since he was six years old,” Priscilla Sheppard said. “That doesn’t mean they’re a gang.''

She said police have harassed her son continually for a long time and stop him for no reason and search him and have never found anything.

For the complete story, read Saturday's Vindicator or

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