Feds want anonymous jury for trial of reputed Four Corner Hustlers boss Labar ‘Bro Man’ Spann
Anonymous juries are rare but not unusual in a case involving a street gang. An anonymous jury was empaneled for the trial of the Hobos ‘super gang’ in 2016.
Federal prosecutors on Monday asked a judge to empanel an anonymous jury in the upcoming racketeering trial of the reputed boss of a dangerous West Side street gang.
The long-awaited trial of Labar “Bro Man” Spann is set for Sept. 13, four years after a sweeping 2017 indictment tied Spann and the Four Corner Hustlers to six murders that took place between 2000 and 2003.
Though anonymous juries are generally rare, it’s not unusual in a case like this one, involving an organized street gang. An anonymous jury was also empaneled for the trial of the Hobos “super gang” in 2016.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Timothy Storino wrote in a court filing Monday that Spann does not object to an anonymous jury, though he “does not agree” with the justification offered by the feds. Storino pointed to Spann’s potential life sentence, as well as the fact that members of the gang “continue to operate today.”
Storino wrote that the Four Corner Hustlers “have the capacity to harm jurors demonstrated by their alleged harm of others including witnesses, and a grand jury has found probable cause that Four Corner Hustlers actually have interfered with the judicial process by committing murder, obstruction of justice, and extortion.”
The prosecutor additionally pointed to publicity surrounding the case, highlighting a 2019 Chicago Sun-Times report about a potential witness.
“This type and level of press coverage enhances the possibility that the jurors’ names would become public and expose them to intimidation and harassment,” Storino wrote.
Spann is accused in all six murders listed in the racketeering indictment, including the killing of Rudy “Kato” Rangel, who was a leader of the Latin Kings when he was fatally shot inside a barbershop in June 2003.
Two other members of the gang who had been expected to go to trial with Spann — Tremayne “Trigga” Thompson and Juhwun Foster — suddenly pleaded guilty last month.