A feared gang enforcer from Central City received a 40-year sentence in state court on Thursday, a month after a federal judge gave him an identical prison term.
Washington “Big Wash” McCaskill, 38, a gunman for the 3NG gang who has admitted to a role in at least eight killings, received the sentence in exchange for his cooperation with prosecutors. He would have faced life in prison if convicted of murder.
The bulky gangster wore a white jail uniform from the Plaquemines Parish jail and said little as Criminal District Court Judge Camille Buras handed down his term, which is to be served without an opportunity for early release.
McCaskill, who also goes by "Dumplin," will serve his state and federal sentences at the same time in the custody of the U.S. Bureau of Prisons.
None of McCaskill’s victims testified at his sentencing, but in his heyday he cut a bloody swath through New Orleans' streets.
Washington “Big Wash” McCaskill was 11 or 12 when he started toting a gun around the streets of New Orleans, he told a jury this week.
McCaskill testified at the trial of 3NG leader Kentrell “Black” Hickerson last year that he started carrying a gun at 11 or 12. McCaskill said he started selling drugs and graduated to murder to protect his group’s turf at Third and South Galvez streets, in Central City.
“We demand respect. Either you roll with us, or you get rolled over,” McCaskill said of his gang's philosophy.
While other members of the group sold crack or heroin, McCaskill dedicated himself to killing. Along with other members of 3NG and the allied “G Strip” gang from Gallier Street in the Upper Ninth Ward, McCaskill targeted federal witnesses for money, rival gangsters for revenge or anyone else for his own protection.
McCaskill has pleaded or testified to a hand in eight killings:
• The killing in the 1990s of a man named Carlton Rose. McCaskill was arrested for murder but beat the charge.
• The 2002 slaying of Alexis “Slam” Williams, a gang lord from the Calliope housing development. McCaskill said he served as a lookout for 3NG leader Hickerson and two other members. The murder, cheered by some residents, established Hickerson's fearsome position among Central City gangs.
• The fatal shooting in April 2011 of Floyd Moore, a member of a rival gang from the Calliope project, over the killing of one of McCaskill’s friends. A group of 3NG gunmen shot Moore 52 times. McCaskill said he served as a driver.
• The killing of Michael Marshall, a witness who was cooperating with the government in a heroin distribution case, in the Upper 9th Ward on Sept. 14, 2011. McCaskill said he committed the murder with another man for a promised $7,500 payment.
• The shooting of Lester “Fat Man” Allen outside a Central City bar 10 days later.
• The killing in November 2011 of Lester Foster, who 3NG members thought might try to retaliate against McCaskill for Allen’s killing.
• The December 2011 shooting of Charles "Buck" Anderson III, a friend and fellow 3NG member who it was thought might bring law enforcement heat on the group for his suspected role in killing a toddler, Keira Holmes, during a shooting in a courtyard of the B.W. Cooper housing development, formerly the Calliope.
Anderson was known for his ride — he was "Buck with the truck" — and police were looking for that truck in connection with 2-year-old Keira's slaying. Friendship was cast aside by gang democracy, McCaskill testified at Hickerson's trial. There was a vote.
"Everybody thought Buck was going to tell," he said.
McCaskill is not done cooperating. He is expected to testify at a murder trial next month against Kendall Livingston, his alleged partner in Anderson's killing, which took place a day after Keira's murder.
At an April hearing in that case, McCaskill implicated Livingston as a shooter and Anderson as the driver in the assault that left Keira dead. Livingston has not been charged in that killing, however.
McCaskill also has testified that he served as a lookout when other members of the gang committed a revenge killing in the former Desire housing development.
The frenetic killing spree came to an end with McCaskill’s arrest in March 2012.
Along with fellow 3NG members Gregory "Rabbit" Stewart and Darryl "Brother" Franklin, McCaskill decided to turn state’s evidence.
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Under the terms of a joint plea agreement he signed with federal and state prosecutors, McCaskill was to be sentenced to the same term in state court that he received from U.S. District Judge Jay Zainey.
Because Zainey sentenced McCaskill last month under seal — closing the courtroom and concealing even the prison term — Thursday’s hearing in state court was the first time his 40-year sentence became public.
McCaskill’s testimony helped take down Hickerson, the 3NG kingpin, at his state racketeering trial last year. He then returned to the witness stand in February for the federal trial of 10 members of the 39ers gang, the alliance between 3NG and the “G-Strip.” All of them were convicted.
McCaskill also testified at the trial last year of notorious Central City cocaine kingpin Telly Hankton and three others. He has admitted, however, that he lied to the FBI when he told an agent that he had bought drugs from Kevin Jackson, a Hankton cousin.
McCaskill's veracity came under more fire from defense attorneys after the 39ers trial. They asserted that the government had failed to turn over a letter from the gunman to a prosecutor that would have helped impeach McCaskill's testimony. It stated, “Our federal case is all made up lies. Darryl Franklin and Rabbit lied about a lot of things.”
However, Zainey rejected the request for a new trial for the gang members, saying McCaskill already had come under heavy grilling about his truthfulness.
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