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December 20, 2022

Alleged gunmen who killed 2 people at Fourth of July cookout last year arrested in sweeping gang investigation

Anthony Lacey-Woodson and Jalen Mickens were charged with murder in the deaths of Sircarr Johnson and Salahaldin Mahmoud

Investigations Shootings
Gang related arrests Thom Carroll/for PhillyVoice

Authorities arrested five gang members for their alleged roles in a series of shootings, including the deaths of Sircarr Johnson and Salahaldin Mahmoud, District Attorney Larry Krasner says. Arrest warrants have been issued for three others.

Two men accused of opening fire at a Fourth of July cookout in 2021, killing two people and wounding two others, have been charged with murder as part of a larger investigation into gang activity in Philadelphia. 

Anthony Lacey-Woodson, 20, and Jalen Mickens, 21, were among four people who allegedly sprayed about 100 bullets during a West Philly barbecue celebrating the opening of Sircarr Johnson's new clothing store, Premiere Bande, on the 100 block of South 60th Street. The shooting killed Johnson and Salahaldin Mahmoud, a cousin of state Sen. Sharif Street's wife, April.

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Lacey-Woodson and Mickens are among five purported gang members charged for their alleged roles in a series of retaliatory shootings against rival gangs and gun trafficking offenses, District Attorney Larry Krasner said Monday. Arrest warrants have been issued for three others. 

Lacey-Woodson and Mickens, who are members of the "02da4" gang, allegedly were targeting a member of the rival gang "524" when they opened fire at the West Philly cookout, investigators said. Johnson and Mahmoud, who were not affiliated with gang activity, were caught in the crossfire. 

Lacey-Woodson also was charged with murder in the death of Antonio Walker, 15, who was fatally shot while playing basketball on the 5200 block of Pentridge Street on March 9, 2021. Walker was a track star who was not involved in gang activity, prosecutors said. Nasir Wells, 21, a fugitive, is wanted for his alleged role in the shooting. 

Lacey-Woodson and Mickens allegedly carried out two other shootings on July 4, 2021 – the same day as the barbecue shooting. They allegedly wounded two people in a shooting on the 1600 block of South 54th Street and injured another person in a shooting on the 6000 block of Walton Avenue. 

The shootings were part of a particularly violent holiday weekend that included five deadly shootings. There were 562 homicides recorded in Philadelphia last year, the most in the city's history. 

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Lacey-Woodson and three others – Tyheed Cooper, 34, Fabian Creary, 21, and Wells – also allegedly participated in a Jan. 16, 2021 shooting on the 3800 block of Parrish Street in Mantua, wounding woman at a party. Cooper and Creary have been arrested and charged with aggravated assault and conspiracy. 

Another fugitives, Ahmir Johnson, 20, is wanted for a shooting on April 3, 2021 on the 1100 block of Divinity Street in Kingsessing. His mother, Kimberly Johnson, 48, has been charged with conspiracy, misleading authorities, tampering with public records and firearm offenses. 

Authorities also want Calvin Gatewood, 25, on firearms and conspiracy charges.  

"Not long ago, I promised the public that members of '02da4' would 'go to jail. And now they have," Krasner said. "They are facing the bars of a jail cell, followed by vigorous and just prosecution by the Philadelphia District Attorney's Office for murder by gun, for shootings and other heinous crimes. So let me be clear to all gang and group members who are involved in gun violence: You're next. Put down the guns. Put them down now, or get ready for a lot of unhappy holidays behind bars."