6 in court as gang trials continue

Six men were convicted or pleaded guilty this week in connection with a wide-ranging criminal case against 36 alleged members of the Hilltop Crips street gang.

A jury on Thursday convicted Darryl Anthony Henderson, 33, and Deandre Lamar Beck, 28, of conspiracy to commit first-degree robbery, first-degree robbery and two counts of theft of a motor vehicle.

Henderson faces 13 to 14 years in prison and is to be sentenced Nov. 10. Beck will face about 10 years in custody when sentenced Oct. 22.

Pierce County prosecutors accused the two of taking part in a beating and robbery outside the Pine Street Landing Bar, 3832 S. Pine St., on July 22, 2009. The victim said he was jumped by five men and his car was stolen, charging documents state.

Henderson and Beck were among 36 alleged members of the Crips accused of committing crimes throughout the city. The men were charged in February after a law enforcement crackdown on the gang.

Four other alleged Crips pleaded guilty earlier this week:

Errol Bobby Mayers, 30, entered a modified guilty plea Tuesday to rioting and conspiracy to commit drive-by shooting. Prosecutors said he took part in a melee Dec. 6, 2008, inside the Denny’s at 8614 S. Hosmer St. and in a shooting in the restaurant’s parking lot.

Mayers faces three to four years in prison when sentenced Dec. 3.

Andre Lashawn Bonds, 38, entered a modified guilty plea Tuesday to conspiracy to commit drive-by shooting and riot and noted in court documents the likelihood of his conviction at trial on the original charges.

Prosecutors said he took part in the melee and shooting Dec. 6, 2008, at the Denny’s. Bonds, who’s been serving time on an unrelated assault conviction, faces five years in prison when sentenced Jan. 7.

Larry Brown, 32, pleaded guilty Monday to second-degree burglary, conspiracy to commit second-degree burglary and riot in connection with the Denny’s melee and shooting. Prosecutors have indicated in court documents they will seek an exceptional sentence of 10 years in prison when Brown is sentenced Nov. 5.

Raphiel Justice IV, 31, pleaded guilty to third-degree assault Tuesday in connection with the Denny’s incidents. He faces 12 months to one year, four months in prison when sentenced Oct. 22.

Seven of the 36 defendants still face trial in Superior Court, and one faces federal charges. Two of the seven defendants have been convicted of most of the charges against them and await trial on one count of criminal conspiracy.

Twenty-seven of the defendants have been convicted of various charges, and one had a lone count of criminal conspiracy against him dismissed.