Famous People Who Were Gangmembers In New York
Partial List of Famous People Who Were Gang Leaders (in alphabetical order):
Stokely Carmichael aka Kwame Ture; Dukes (?) in the Tremont area of South Bronx; Black Panther Leader, AAPRP Leader, etc.
In his youth, Sonny Carson, as a leader of a gang called the Bishops, Carson developed the streetwise qualities and charisma that made him, even in recent years, popular with many young people in neighborhoods like Brownsville and Bedford-Stuyvesant, his associates said. (Newsday, Oct. 18, 2002).
Nicky Cruz; a president, vice president, and war councilor of a notorious and vicious Fort Greene, Brooklyn gang, the Mau Maus, an experienced thief and mugger, and a hardened and violent street criminal—all before he reached 18. From 1955 to 1958, the Mau Maus were one of the most feared of all New York City gangs -- making headlines regularly. (By the way, a member of the Mau Maus helped the Capeman murder a young man in Hell's Kitchen in Aug. 1959).
The original Dion and the Belmonts were: Dion DiMucci (lead vocals), Carlo Mastrangelo (baritone/bass vocals), Fred Milano (tenor vocals) and Angelo D'Aleo (tenor vocals). Carlo and Freddie were members of the Imperial Hoods while Dion was a Fordham Baldie.
Jose Fernandez; Superintendent of New York City Board of Education.
Larry King; The judge told him to get a life. So he did!
Burt Lancaster; East Harlem; Gymnast, Circus Performer, Actor, Producer. He was part of the Kay Brother Circus. He made over 60 movies. He, also, was an avid art collector. (Source: AMC informational clip, Jan. 6, 2002).
Felipe Luciano; Young Lords (Party) in East Harlem; Motivational speaker.
Norman Podhoretz (b. 1930, Jan.); writer; In 1948, he was 18, and a member of the Cherokees. (see Schneider, Eric; "Vampires, Dragons, and Egyptian Kings").
Colin Powell; Kelly Street, near Southern Boulevard and 163rd Street, in the South Bronx; he went on to become Chief of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and presently is Secretary of State.
Russell Simmons; Queens; Entertainment Coordinator, Producer.
Partial List of Infamous People Who Were Gang Leaders:
Al Capone; "Capone was a tough, scrappy kid and belonged to the South Brooklyn Rippers and then later to the Forty Thieves Juniors and the Five Point Juniors. As John Kobler wrote, "the street gang was escape. The street gang was freedom. The street gang offered outlets for stifled young energies. The agencies that might have kept boys off the street, the schools and churches, lacked the means to do so. Few slum schools had a gym or playground or any kind of after-class recreation program...They formed their own street society, independent of the adult world and antagonistic to it. Led by some older, forceful boy, they pursued the thrills of shared adventure, of horseplay, exploration, gambling, pilfering, vandalism, sneaking a smoke or alcohol, secret ritual, smut sessions, fighting rival gangs."" (The Crime Library, http://www.crimelibrary.com/capone/caponeappren.htm ).
"The most notorious recruit into the Five Points Gang was a teenaged boy of Italian descent who was born in Williamsburg, Brooklyn in 1899 to immigrant parents. His name was Alphonse Capone, but he was better known on the streets as "Scarface." He became a member of the James Street Gang, which was a minor league, of sorts, to the Five Pointers. One of Capone's childhood friends, and a fellow member of the Five Points Gang, was another street thug named Lucky Luciano." (East Coast Gangs, http://www.nagia.org/east_coast_gangs.htm ).
What about these personalities?
Adam Clayton Powell – Harlem
Shirley Chisolm – Bklyn.- also BFL
Charles Rangel – Queens
John Phillip Randolph – Manh.
Updated: Jan. 28, 2003