41 arrests were made in a crackdown of a West Side street gang known for violence against people who aid the police.
By Annie Sweeney and Jason Meisner Tribune reporters
4:28 p.m. CDT, June 13, 2013
The top leaders of one of Chicago’s most violent street gangs have been charged in a sweeping racketeering case that alleges they controlled their West Side drug empire through pattern of intimidation, kidnappings, shootings and murder dating back to the mid-1990s, according to an affidavit unsealed today in Cook County Criminal Court.
Before sunrise today, police armed with “no knock” search warrants fanned out across the Chicago area surprising dozens of leaders of the Black Souls, including Cornel Dawson, known as the gang’s chief, and Teron Odum, described as Dawson’s second-in-command. Also arrested were a number of “top runners” and “supervisors” who authorities say control the gang’s street operations.
The 78-page affidavit alleges the Black Souls ran an $11 million-a-year drug operation and protected the enterprise with violence that included at least seven murders from 1994 to 2012. In all, 23 members of the gang have been charged with racketeering conspiracy, while 18 more face state drug or weapons charges, authorities said.