MS-13 gang members – more than a dozen undocumented immigrants – were indicted and arrested Thursday (Mar. 2) for the murders of seven individuals over the span of 2015-2017. Two that sent shockwaves through the Brentwood Long Island community was the brutal 2016 killings of teenage girls Nisa Mickens, 15, and Kayla Cuevas, 16.
Mickens was involved in a series of disputes with the gang members before her body was gruesomely discovered on Sept. 13, a day before her 16th birthday. The next day, Cuevas was found in the backyard of a neighboring home after running for her life. Both were discovered with wounds inflicted from a machete and baseball bat.
— CNN (@CNN) March 3, 2017
“The Brentwood family has spent the last six months in mourning, but today marks the beginning of the healing process for this beautiful and resilient community,” Suffolk County Police Commissioner Timothy Sini said.
Alexi Saenz, Selvin Chavez, Enrique Portillo, whose ages ranged from 19-22, along with two juveniles are being charged with the murders of the two girls. During the same six-week period the remains of Oscar Acosta, Miguel Garcia-Moran, and MS-13 member Jose Pena-Hernandez were also found, all of whom attended Brentwood High School.
The Mara Salvatrucha gang is rooted in the 1980s Los Angeles community by immigrants fleeing a civil war in El Salvador. “We have promised to eradicate MS13 from our streets and we remain fully committed to finishing the job,” said Sini. “We will continue to keep the pressure on this ruthless gang and anyone who associates with them, and we will spare no resource to accomplish our objective.”