It was to be a simple robbery. When three members of the United Blood Nation robbed The Mattress Warehouse in Charlotte, North Carolina, on May 25, 2014, it was just another day at the office. But things escalated quickly once law enforcement picked up a scent.
The trail led them to Jamell “Assassin” Cureton (photo above, left), Nana “Ratchet” Adoma, and David “Flames” Fudge. All three are members of the United Blood Nation, a nationwide criminal organization with a strong hierarchy and strict code. Once the three Bloods gangsters were charged in connection with that robbery, they began using the group’s long reach and ability to use deadly force to silence opponents.
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As a 5-Star General in the gang, Cureton, especially, held enough sway to set in motion a violent plot. According to court records, Cureton and other Bloods gang members discussed that Mattress Warehouse owner Douglas London was the only eye witness that could identify Cureton. As such they saw no other option than to kill him.
Over the next months, the gangsters exchanged correspondence and conducted numerous in-person and telephonic meetings, during which they discussed and planned the murder of London. The gang picked Malcolm Jarrel Hartley, who goes by the nickname “Silent,” as the hitman. On October 23, 2014, he was driven to South Carolina, where he shot and killed not just Douglas London, but also his wife who was at home as well.
Collateral damage, Cureton would later call her death.
Upon returning to Charlotte, Hartley (photo above, right) stopped at the house of Rahkeem “Hitman” McDonald, another Blood, to dispose of the gun. Afterwards, Hartley returned to his apartment, where he met with other gang members to celebrate the couple’s murders.
After successfully carrying out the gang leadership’s orders, Hartley was “ranked up” or promoted to a 2-Star General. Shortly after the murders, Cureton ordered the gang to remain silent about the Londons’ murders and authorized action against any person who talked about it. During a telephone gang meeting with other United Blood Nation members, Ibn Rashaan Kornegay also directed them to lay low to avoid contact with law enforcement.
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Over the course of the investigation into The Mattress Store robbery and the Londons’ murders, authorities determined that Cureton, Adoma, and Ahkeem “Lil Keem” McDonald were responsible for the August 2013 murder of Kwamne Clyburn, who was killed for “false claiming.” He falsely claimed to be a Bloods member and subsequently failed a “DNA check,” meaning the gang members could not verify Clyburn’s claim to be a Blood.
For their roles in this organized orgy of violence and death, a jury found some of those charged guilty, while others had already pleaded guilty. A judge then handed down heavy sentences. Adoma was sentenced to two consecutive life sentences and 25 years in prison, Akheem McDonald is to serve two consecutive life sentences, Jamell Lamon Cureton, Malcolm Jarrel Hartley and Rahkeem Lee McDonald were each sentenced to life in prison, David Lee Fudge was sentenced to 26 years, and Ibn Rashaan Kornegay was sentenced to 23 years.
“Jamell Cureton and Malcolm Hartley are violent and ruthless men who used their gang affiliations to commit heinous crimes against innocent victims,” John Strong, the Special Agent in Charge of the Charlotte Division of the FBI, told reporters. “Due to the incredible cooperation and coordination between the FBI and our local law enforcement partners, they had no choice except to admit their crimes and accept their fate to spend the rest of their lives in federal prison.”
Despite the long prison sentences, one can be certain that all the men involved have already been replaced by the United Blood Nation. With a vast pool of disgruntled youngsters growing up in poverty surrounded by drugs and violence and lacking options, groups like the Bloods will never have a shortage of willing soldiers.
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