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Accused leader of violent Baltimore gang on the run as feds say he failed to surrender to latest charges

The reputed leader of a violent East Baltimore-based gang — whose members were charged by federal prosecutors with being behind more than 40 killings and shootings — is on the run, and a warrant has been issued for his arrest.

Gary “Hov” Creek, 39, had been free on pretrial release for drug charges filed in 2019, and authorities had arranged to have him turn himself in Thursday as the new indictment was unsealed and announced.

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Creek did not show, Assistant U.S. Attorney Patricia McLane wrote in requesting a warrant. He also did not return to his third-party custodian’s residence, skipped a physical therapy appointment and has not had contact with his probation agent, she said.

Creek’s attorney Eugene Gorokhov did not respond to requests for comment.

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Gary Creek, a/k/a Hov, 39, one of the accused leaders of the Triple C gang, is on the run and a federal judge has issued a search warrant.
Gary Creek, a/k/a Hov, 39, one of the accused leaders of the Triple C gang, is on the run and a federal judge has issued a search warrant. (Handout / HANDOUT)

Creek was released to home confinement in May last year as COVID-19 cases spiked in the Washington, D.C., jail where he was being held. Creek said he was at particular risk for serious health complications if he contracted the virus.

Prosecutors opposed his release at the time, but said they felt comfortable allowing him to turn himself in Wednesday.

“For more than a year, Mr. Creek has not been charged with violating any of his conditions of release,” the U.S. Attorney’s Office said in a statement. “Therefore, when Mr. Creek was charged in a second superseding indictment on racketeering and drug conspiracy charges, the government determined that it was reasonable and appropriate to work through Mr. Creek’s counsel to arrange a time for Mr. Creek to self-surrender for his initial appearance on the new charges.”

Prosecutors say Creek founded Triple-C, or CCC, around 2015 after leaving the Black Guerrilla Family gang. On social media posts, Creek uploaded images of CCC-branded clothing and hats and wore CCC jewelry. But Acting U.S. Attorney Jonathan F. Lenzner said at a news conference Thursday that Triple-C operated “essentially an organized crime business” and were “as organized and savvy as they are violent and relentless.”

An ATF and Baltimore Police investigation overseen by federal prosecutors alleges the gang is behind at least 18 murders and 28 attempted murders between 2015 and 2020. The volume of violence attributed to the group over five years is the most chronicled in a single indictment in recent memory, and spans the city.

Creek himself was shot in December 2018, in the 600 block of N. Lakewood Ave., police confirmed Thursday.

Creek was charged in 2019 through a federal criminal complaint. In those documents, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives said they had confidential sources who said Creek was the primary supplier of drugs to Triple-C and other drug trafficking organizations in Baltimore City from at least 2018, and that he operated and/or supplied drugs to drug shops near Harford Road and North Avenue, McElderry and Jefferson streets, and a stash house on Cliftview Avenue.

“Anyone engaged in trafficking in that area without Creek’s approval would be robbed,” one source of information for the ATF said, according to the court documents.

They cited recorded telephone calls in which Creek talked about keeping people in line and taxing drug dealers in the area.

“They ain’t in line, they get put in line,” Creek said, according to prosecutors. Referring to the tax, he said: “Thirty percent apply to them too though . . . . Everybody taxation from representation.”

U.S. District Judge Catherine C. Blake found in May 2020 that Creek’s risk from COVID-19 “rises to the level of a ‘compelling reason’ for temporary release.” He was released to live with his sister and her husband, both city Fire Department supervisors, in Harford County.

“In particular, the court considers the danger Creek poses to the community, which may be mitigated by the reliability of Creek’s third party custodian and the fact that her residence is outside of Baltimore City,” Blake wrote. “On balance, Creek has demonstrated that the risk from the COVID-19 virus is a compelling reason for temporary release.”

Creek previously pleaded guilty in 2007 in the Eastern District of Pennsylvania and was sentenced to nine years in federal prison for his role in a crack cocaine conspiracy centered in Philadelphia.

The indictment announced Thursday alleges that Creek took contract murders on behalf of CCC and ordered other members to fulfill the contracts. Triple-C members “enhanced their status within the gang by carrying out acts of violence against rivals and earning their ‘C’,” the indictment said.

Most of the violence is attributed to younger members of the gang, but the indictment accuses Creek and one of his lieutenants of murdering Jamere Ricks, 19, in November 2016 and that Creek directed an attempted contract hit in 2018.

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