Maniac Latin Disciples

Founded Founded in 1966 by Albert Hernandez, Pete Correa, and Jose Cedeno in or near West Town West Town: East Humboldt Park
Founding story

Founded in the East Humboldt Park section of West Town neighborhood near Rockwell and Potomac

Formerly known as

Disciples 1966-1970; Latin Disciples 1970-1992

Affiliations ;
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Colors Black and Light blue
Primary ethnicities Latino (Puerto Rican)
Symbols Monk, Swastika, Heart, Devil Horns, and Devil Tail
Symbol usage

Pitchfork, monk, swastika, heart with devil horns and tail

Status Active

 

The Maniac Latin Disciple early history is indeed fascinating as they have deep ties to the Gangster Disciples and Black Disciples that date far back in time.

The story begins in the year 1966, the same year several African American street gangs united under the “Black Disciple” umbrella on the south side of Chicago.  Since 1961, Disciples were operating in the Cabrini Green public housing projects on Chicago’s north side.  Devil’s Disciples/Black Disciples attended Well’s High School and other elementary schools in the area as that was part of their district.  All children from all over West Town also attended the same high school which is located on the borders of Ukrainian Village, East Humboldt Park and Wicker Park.  Young Puerto Rican youths from Rockwell and Potomac in East Humboldt Park attending the same schools as Black Disciples soon became influenced by the Disciples.  These kids had problems with some white greaser gangs in the area like C-Notes, Gaylords, P.V.P and various others.  These kids had family members that were Milwaukee Kings and Latin Kings and various others so they had no beef with Puerto Rican gangs, however, these boys didn’t want to join the nearby Latin Kings around Von Humboldt School instead they were enticed into joining the Disciples and to gain entry into the Black Disciple nation.

The youths from Rockwell and Potomac could only gain this entry into the Black Disciples if they were to create their own gang for Hispanics, this is when “Latin Disciple” was created in 1966.  The boys went in different directions.  Albert Hernandez was one of the leaders and creators of  a Latin Disciple group and simply called his group of young 12 year olds “Latin Disciples.”  The second group was the “Bruce Lee Latin Disciples” that was led by Pete “The Burner” Correa.  Down the street more toward Rockwell and Crystal, Jose “Freckles” Cedeno led the “Almighty Latin Disciples.  At the beginning there were three different Latin Disciple gangs at this intersection.

The Disciple future high up members were a strong part of this area since the beginning.  Future leader Jose “Freckles” Cedeno’s mother owned a corner store right on Rockwell and Potomac named Santa’s Store and the family lived on the first floor in 1967.  Jose himself moved onto the second floor with his girlfriend Anna.  Edwin “Mousey” Barrios moved onto the 3rd floor and was also a big time MLD in later years.  The Ruiz family lived kitty corner from the store and this was the home of David Ruiz and Carlos Ruiz who were the fathers of “The Bums.”

The Latin Disciples liked to help out the community at Rockwell and Potomac in the East Humboldt Park neighborhood. The Disciples treated many people in the community with respect and would even stick up for people that were being bullied by neighborhood gangs, this lead to conflicts with Latin Kings, Warlords and Spanish Lords, not white gangs like Gang Land says, especially not Gaylords and Harrison Gents that were never in East Humboldt Park.  The Disciples hung out with the Milwaukee Kings as their closest allies and the two clubs partied together.

During the ferocious blizzard of 1967, the Disciples volunteered to shovel snow for people in the community, this got Albert Hernandez and his 11 other Disciples pictured in the Chicago Daily News news paper in 1967 which is the photo that was used for the History Channel’s Gang Land show, it is surprising that Hernandez was almost 13 years old in that photo.

In the year 1968, the Latin Disciples opened the door to more recruitment as they began taking blacks, Mexicans, Polish, German and just about any type of individuals with many backgrounds.  Albert Hernandez was charismatic and being linked to the notorious Devil’s Disciples brought more notoriety.  Soon Disciple numbers would swell to over 100 members at Rockwell and Potomac in the late 60s. This was also the time when Albert Hernandez called for a unity between Latin Disciples, Almighty Latin Disciples and Bruce Lee Disciples to create one nation known as “Latin Disciples.”  Albert Hernandez was then appointed as the leader of the Latin Disciples and was regarded as a “King.”

In the late 1960s the Latin Disciples befriended the Spanish Cobras as they moved onto Maplewood and Division, this was the beginning of a very close relationship with the Cobras that would eventually evolve into one of the most bitter rivalries in Chicago history.

On the day of January 18, 1972, Albert Hernandez was out at Rockwell and Potomac as usual when Latin King gang members came into the neighborhood and were harassing one of the Polish members of the LDs, Hernandez was doing what he did best in sticking up for others and this is what led to those Latin Kings pulling a knife and stabbing him to death.  Albert Hernandez was killed a few months before turning 18.  He left a legacy that was heavily admired but his legacy was also turned into more than it really was.  Albert Hernandez was born on April 5, 1954 and died on January 18, 1972.

Hernandez was said to be a big reader of Adolf Hitler because he admired the dictator’s play for power, in reality there was no known interest Hernandez had in the Socialist Dictator, this story may have been spun after his death to make him look like a ruler of the Disciples.

The title of “King” was said to be what Hernandez wanted to call himself; however, when he was alive, the title of “King” did not exist within the Latin Disciples, that title was given to Hernandez after his death and he was known as “King Hitler.”  This also plays into the legends that Hernandez was a drug dealer and had his Disciples selling lots of drugs while Hernandez took a taxed amount from each member, the truth is Hernandez was not even a dealer, and the Disciples did not even start dealing drugs in high volume until years after his death.  Hernandez did not even open any new territory during his years, Rockwell and Potomac was all there was between 1966 and 1972, and there was no Hirsh and Rockwell and no Latin Scorpions mixed in with MLD history.  Many of the original Disciples left the gang after Hernandez was killed, and especially the vast majority were long gone by the late 1970s when the drug game became huge.

Members of the Latin Disciples and Milwaukee Kings got revenge for the killing of Hernandez, even though there was no arrests made for the Hernandez murder, the streets knew which Latin King did it and revenge was given to that Latin King that was found dead later, there were no known arrests for that murder either.

The Latin Disciples were infuriated over the death of Hernandez and it was the first time they would suffer the death of a leader.  The Latin Disciples then launched a full scale war on the Latin Kings led by their new leader “Prince Diablo.”  Out of respect for Hitler the title “King” died along with Hernandez and at that point forward the new title would be “Prince,” and Prince Diablo was the first to carry this title until the late 1970s.

After Albert Hernandez passed away the Latin Disciples colonized the West Humboldt Park neighborhood where they conflicted more with Latin Kings and Simon City Royals in that area.

As I stated a little earlier, a bond developed between Spanish Cobras and Latin Disciples and this led some Disciples and Cobras to call themselves “Almighty” back in the early 1970s.  The Latin Lovers were also Almighty when they formed in 1973 but this all was short lived after the Disciples started “Maniac” concepts for their senior members in 1973.

In the year 1973, Pete “The Burner” Correa was arrested and supposedly thrown from the police station window.  In his trial he cussed out the judge and said he was a “maniac;” therefore, since 1973 the “maniac” part of the name was born and Maniac concepts were created.  The Latin Disciples now had structure under Maniac as members would start out as Pee Wee Latin Disciples, then become Young Latin Disciples.  Next they would become Young Future Latin Disciples, then after that it was Future Latin Disciples.  The final title was to become a “Maniac” and they would then be “Maniac Latin Disciples.”

The violence between Latin Kings and Latin Disciples led to incarcerations of many Latin Disciple members in the early 1970s including co-founder Rudy Rios who found himself in prison by 1974.

In 1976, the Latin Disciples and Spanish Cobras formed an alliance called “Young Latino Organization” or “YLO.” Then in 1978 the unity was expanded to the Imperial Gangsters and Latin Eagles to form the “United Latino Organization” or “ULO” that reached other various clubs that hung out with them like Orquestra Albany.

In the year 1977, the Maniac Latin Disciples opened up territory at Avers and Division in the West Humboldt Park neighborhood, thus, beginning the West Humboldt Park operations.

April 1978  Larry Hoover sat down with the leaders of both allied gangs and enemy gangs in Stateville Correctional facility and created the Folk Nation alliance while his enemies created the People Nation alliance right then and there.  It was at this meeting where the Latin Disciples joined the Folk Nation since they were already part of the “Black Gangster Disciple nation” alliance.  Out of this Folk Nation unity was the “Latin Familia” or “Latin Family” which was a unity of Folks that would work to strengthen the Latino gangs involved in it such as the Latin Disciples, Spanish Cobras, Satan Disciples, Imperial Gangsters, Latin Eagles, Ashland Vikings, Orquestra Albany, Ambrose and Two Six.  This would end up helping the Latin Disciples to expand their drug empire especially now that they could walk the streets united with Simon City Royals, Spanish Cobras and Imperial Gangsters.

Months before the Folk nation was created Prince Diablo was no longer in charge and Ramon Prince Chi Chi” Vasquez took over leadership on the Pee Wees while 23 year old Jose “Prince Freckles” Cedeno was running the whole nation.

Shortly after Chi Chi took took over the Pee Wees some Puerto Rican youths were being bullied in the Logan Square community by Gaylords, Simon City Royals and Latin Kings, but there biggest issue was with the Simon City Royals from Christiana and Wellington.  Simon City Royals would attack these youths and beat them up while they tried to go to school just because they were Puerto Rican.  One of youths that was bullied was “Karate Chino” who was a tough street warrior along with these other youths, the problem was they were outnumbered.  These youths reached out to Prince Chi Chi and all of Rockwell and Potomac and asked to become a part of the Latin Disciples as a new section.  Prince Chi Chi gave his blessing and the Logan Square MLDs were born at Kedzie and Barry in 1978. Kedzie and Barry would go on to become a legendary section with some of the toughest MLDs.

Shortly after Kedzie and Barry was established Prince Chi Chi was shot and killed by a member of the Insane Unknowns named Miguel Vargas in 1978 who was arrested for the crime and tried in juvenile court.  The Disciples were infuriated over this murder and were now in a full scale war with the Insane Unknowns.

At this point in time Jose “Prince Freckles” Cedeno  was running a major drug ring at Rockwell and Potomac thanks to the connections of Latin Disciple Hugo “Juice” Herrera who had ties to the notorious Herrera family drug cartel, which eventually brought Police attention by October of 1979 (Southern Illinoisian P 22, July 17 1980).  Juice was a Latin Disciple from Kedzie and Barry so the real connection came from the Logan Square section and not from Rockwell and Potomac even though the operation took place at the Twilight Zone.

In the year 1979, Spanish Cobras and Latin Disciples both agreed to create a divide on the streets that categorized “Maniacs” and “Insanes.”  All the closet allies with Spanish Cobras would be known as Insanes, while the closest allies with Latin Disciples became Maniacs.  This divide was non-violent and the ULO/YLO alliance remained in tact, this was just a way to create two families and to make Maniac more official.  Latin Disciples had been calling themselves Maniac since 1973 but now in 1979 allies would be known as Maniacs as well.  Allies such as: Milwaukee Kings, Latin Jivers, Latin Lovers and Latin Stylers.

By mid-July 1980 the DEA and the Chicago Police’s Organized Crime Unit closed in on the drug operation that originally started at just Rockwell and Potomac but soon spread to four other locations on the north side and northwest side.  46 people were arrested instantly in this drug bust, mostly Latin Disciples and the police were out to snag 17 others.  The police said in a statement to the press that you could buy any drug you wanted at Rockwell and Potomac and cars were literally lined up waiting to get their drugs (Southern Illinoisian P 22, July 17 1980).

1 year earlier on the 4th of July 1979 Cedena was arrested for running a drug ring at the same corner of Rockwell and Potomac along with two other street corners Washtenaw and Hirsch and at Evergreen and Wastenaw in cooperation with the Spanish Cobras.  18 members of both gangs were arrested but they got away with it as “Prince Freckles” was able to restart up his operation months later, once again based on Rockwell and Potomac, but in 1980 he was actually convicted (Chicago Tribune, July 5, 1979 Page 3).  This showed now the Latin Disciples were heavily in the drug business, Freckles was the one that started the Latin Disciples on a path of highly complex drug operations and made the Latin Disciples regard Rockwell and Potomac even more as a sacred corner.

After Cedeno was put away in prison, a new leader emerged to take control of the Latin Disciples.  This would be 19 year old Fernando “Prince Fernie” Zayas.  Zayas would continue on where Cedeno left off expanding the empire and bringing in drug profits.  On July 2, 1983 Prince Fernie wanted to let the Insane Unknowns know that he did not forget about Ramon Prince Chi Chi Vasquez.  Zayas even had a tattoo on his left hand that says “Chi Chi rest in peace.”

On Friday night July 1, 1983 Zayas and his friends were partying it up when word was that Miguel Vargas was in the area hanging out with his friends out on the porch watching T.V. after 1 A.M. that night. Zayas hated Vargas because back in 1978 Vargas, then 15 years old, shot and killed Prince Chi Chi.  In 1979 Vargas pleaded guilty to the murder in juvenile court; however, he was back on the streets by 1983 and Zayas was gunning for him to avenge Chi Chi.  On that Friday night/Saturday morning Zayas and Jose “Baby” Rodriguez and two others took a car from Juanita Rodriguez without her knowing.  The car pulled up to the apartments at 1438 west Catalpa in the Andersonville section of the Edgewater neighborhood where Vargas was with his two friends Ruben Gutierrez, 20 years old, and Luis Cuaresma, 17 years old were watching the outdoor T.V. on the first floor and conversing.  Zayas and one other Latin Disciple got out of the car and fired several shots at the three on the porch.  The main target Miguel Vargas was killed at the scene along with one other and the third died at a nearby hospital.  Zayas and the MLDs got their revenge for the killing and celebrated later that night (People V. Zayas 1989) (Chicago Tribune July 3, 1983, page 3).  At first, the Latin Disciples got away with the killing until later that month witnesses started coming forward and saying they either saw Zayas do the killing or they heard him brag about it which all led to Zayas getting arrested by August and got him convicted of murder and sentenced to two life sentences which he is still serving.

In the year 1983, the Kedzie and Barry MLDs came to the Avondale neighborhood at Barry and California and flipped a club called the Brands Park Party People into MLDs placing “Moe” and “Froggy” in charge of this section, this brought the birth of MLDs in Avondale.

Incarceration did not stop “Prince Fernie” from running the Latin Disciples, he was still the Prince of the nation and for the first time, the Latin Disciples on the street were being controlled by an imprisoned leader.  As the 1980s progressed the Latin Disciples grew in size into the hundreds in gang membership.  Latin Disciples also spread their influence outside of East and West Humboldt Park opening territory in  Bucktown, Hermosa, North Center, southern West Town, Belmont – Cragin, West Ridge (Rosemont and California), Near West Side (Tri Taylor area, Taylor and Oakley), Gage Park (south side), Irving Park and Avondale.  These additional territories would open all throughout the 1980s and into the 1990s.  The strongest sections would still be Rockwell and Potomac and Talman and Wabansia.

West Humboldt Park influence spread further in the mid-1980s as Division and Avers MLDs opened the Springfield and Grand section (Grand City).

starting in 1987, newer Spanish Cobras and Latin Disciples did not get along as well as the older members of each gang.  Fist fights would break out and other kinds of drama between both gangs that older members completely avoided, instead the older members organized the conflicts.  The older members would bring the younger members into a school yard and let them have a big brawl to get all the frustrations out then after that there was peace.  It was sort of like being a parent having young siblings that don’t get along, make them fight it out and then shake hands afterward.  This was a great way of keeping YLO/ULO Folks in tact but it was still concerning that the younger members of Cobras and Disciples were having these conflicts to begin with but for these next 5 years this is how conflicts were effectively resolved.

Starting in 1989, the Latin Disciples joined the SGD (Spanish Growth And Development) Coalition or “La Tabla” in prison, which was an attempt to organize the Latin Folks gangs by creating an organized council within the Folk nation that would keep any brewing interalliance wars from popping off.

The Latin Disciples were one of the main gangs at the top seat of the council alongside their biggest allies the Spanish Cobras.  The SGD basically gave complete power to Latino and white gangs to govern themselves without the African American Folk Nation gangs intervening.  Instead of being a positive thing for the Latin Folks, SGD ended up having a reverse effect.  The Latin Disciples were at the head of the La Tabla; therefore, they were one of the main decision making organizations if disputes were brought before La Tabla.  When conflicts arose and were taken before La Tabla and MLDs made a decision on it allies would often complain the decision was unfair and felt the Disciples were biased because of their position, Spanish Cobras were especially vocal about this.  On the streets tensions began to spark between Cobras and Disciples and some minor incidences of violence would pop off between Maniacs and Insanes over the next two years but the issues would always get smoothed over within a short period of time, but it was the beginning of harsh conflicts yet to come.

in 1989, the relations with Maniacs was mostly tight as only the usual skirmishes among the younger members were the worst thing to happen with fellow Folks.  Things got very serious in 1989 when a argument happened at a party with the Western and Cortez Imperial Gangsters.  One of the MLDs got into it with “Flaco G” of the Imperial Gangsters and this led to the MLD shooting Flaco G dead at the party.  Angry feelings ensued but a war was not initiated as an agreement was reached.  The real anger came months later when another MLD shot and killed another Imperial Gangster and the IGs threatened war if MLDs did not turn over the shooter, the MLDs refused and this started a very nasty war between Maniac Latin Disciples and Imperial Gangsters.  This became the first major Folk against Folk war on the northern part of the city.

The war with the Western and Cortez Imperial Gangsters was nasty over the next two years as several shootings went down between them.  Very frequently Western and Cortez Imperial Gangsters would take shots at MLDs right after school at nearby Roberto Clemente High School, this led to “Flintstone G” of the Imperial Gangsters making an attempted assassination until he ran out of bullets then he ran home and cut through the gangway at Augusta and Cortez where an MLD was waiting in the alley for him and shot him dead.

At about New Years Even of 1991, going into 1992, the Imperial Gangster and Maniac Latin Disciple war ended for the time being.

In 1992, the skirmishes between Insanes and Maniacs became even more frequent and it boiled into the first major war between Cobras and Disciples as a series of shootouts happened for two days straight that was bad enough to make it on the news.  The war was stopped once older members put an end to it.

Another bad incident happened in April of 1992 when MLDs accused Orlando of the Spanish Cobras of selling them bad drugs, MLDs swiftly got vengeance by shooting Orlando to death which started a major riot in the streets between Cobras and Disciples that went on for two days and even made the news.  The Kedzie and Barry MLDs were the ones involved on the Disciple side.  The guns blazed all around Logan Square for those two days as both gangs were hitting each other hard back and forth until it was resolved.

In the aftermath of the 1992 war, the Insane and Maniac families made their organizations more official than ever before and intensified the divide.  Now Cobras went by “Insane Spanish Cobra” while Latin Disciples now went by “Maniac Latin Disciple” at all times.  This divide now caused their allies to back up Cobras or Maniacs whenever there was violence going on against each other.  Another group splintered out of ULO known as the “Almighty” alliance.  The Simon City Royals, Insane Popes, Latin eagles and Imperial Gangsters went that route.

Before 1992, being a Maniac Latin Disciple was more of a title for older members and was the rank but now Maniac was fully part of the name for the whole nation even the younger members.

In November of 1993 the friction between Maniacs and Insanes boiled over some more after conflict exploded at a party at a corner house at California and Cortez in the East Humboldt Park neighborhood.  The Spanish Cobras and all their Insane family allies decided to throw a massive party that went into the late hours of the night.  The party was mainly thrown by Spanish Cobras, YLO Cobras, Insane Campbell Boys and Insane Dragons.  A live DJ was spinning that night and a dance floor was full of activity as the DJ spun away into the night while everyone was drinking and having a good time.  As the night progressed Maniac Latin Disciples from Thomas and Washtenaw (Murder Town MLDs) heard about the party since they were just a few blocks away.  The Disciples felt they had ownership of California and Cortez and figured they can crash any party they want at any time and that’s exactly what happened.  These MLDs came to the party uninvited and began dancing on the dance floor in cocky way while waiving pistols in the air and showing them off.  All the Insanes were bothered right away by this cocky behavior and began griping to each other about how it was disrespectful but these MLDs felt it was disrespectful to have a party in their territory without an invite.  Some main members of the Spanish Cobras now gathered at the doorway which prompted one of the MLDs to act even more cocky while waving his pistol around.  The Cobras then threatened the MLDs and this prompted MLDs to gather reinforcements of their own and from allies, the Cobras followed suit.  Soon several members of the Spanish Cobras, YLO Cobras, Insane Dragons and Insane Campbell Boys gathered with guns in hand on one side of the street, while several Maniac Latin Disciples, YLO Disciples, Maniac Campbell Boys and Latin Jivers gathered on the opposite side of the street with guns in hand too.  Both sides gathered up while hurling insults and shouting at each other until there were about 150 gang members on each side of the street on each side, totaling 300 gang members in total!  By 3:30 in the morning the shouting conflict got violent as the guns started sparking and a violent gun fight ensued that last five minutes.  One of the Insane Dragons even began firing an Uzi at the Maniacs.  Store windows were being shot to pieces and cars roved the intersection doing drive by shootings at the crowds, the scene was total anarchy and chaos to the point that the Chicago police were too scared to show up. The crowds soon disbursed as they continued to blast at each other and this broke the violence into pockets all around the vicinity as you could hear gun shots echoing from all around.  It took the police nearly an hour to show up just after the Insane Dragons made another trip thundering down California looking for more MLDs to shoot at.  Several people were shot that night and the bad blood was becoming worse between Maniacs and Insanes, however, surprisingly after this gun battle peace came back upon the Maniacs and Insanes.

In the fall of 1993, MLDs gunned down “Fred Dog” of the Insane Campbell Boys as they shot his car up.  MLDs had staked him out before the shooting and knew what streets he would pass each morning.  After the shooting Insane Campbell Boys retaliated byshooting two MLDs dead from two different neighborhoods.  MLDs retaliated by killing “Sunny Boy” of the Insane Dragons.  MLDs opened Sunny Boy’s window to his bedroom and shot him while he slept.

After all these shootings another peace treaty between Maniacs and Insanes was established but bitter feelings were still there.  In one incident just before the peace treaty in January of 1994, Nelson “Wolfie” Vargas attacked and Insane Campbell Boy by shooting him until the gun jammed.  The shooting crippled the ICB’s fingers and after the gun jammed Wolfie pistol whipped him, that Insane Campbell Boy was infuriated.

In Februrary 1994 the Insane and Maniac peace treaty was in full swing and the incident where Wolfie shot that ICB was to be put to rest and the ICB was not allowed to take revenge but he simply wouldn’t let it go.  One February afternoon after school let out at Roberto Clemente High School Wolfie was approached by the ICB that he shot a month prior.  The ICB showed his messed up fingers from the shooting and pulled out a gun.  The ICB was accompanied by Spanish Cobra gang members that did not expect this ICB to pull out his gun and confront Wolfie like this.  Wolfie started laughing at his fingers.  The ICB instantly became enraged and started shooting Wolfie but Wolfie kept on laughing even as then bullets tore into him.  Lots of people witnessed the shooting as there were several people standing out front and Wolfie continued to laugh at his shooter until he passed away.  The MLDs blamed the Cobras for the shooting because Cobras were standing right next to the ICB shooter and this caused violence between Cobras and Disciples once again but it died down once the Cobras forced the Insane Campbell Boys to disband due to breaking the treaty.

In late 1994 or maybe early 1995, another war sparked off between Spanish Cobras and Maniac Latin Disciples that lasted two weeks and once again it was squashed but again this was another example of how relations were crumbling.

In the year 1996, At the intersection of Talman and Wabansia “Real Side,” Enrique “Prince Rick Dog” Garcia and his second in command, 26 year old Johnny “Don Loco” Almodovar were successfully moving record high profits of drugs on this corner, in fact, it began to surpass the operations at Rockwell and Potomac that was being commanded by the “Bum Brothers,” mainly Jaime “Tuffy Bum” Ruiz.  Tuffy Bum asked the street Prince Rick Dog for a larger cut of the profits at the Real Side but he was turned down.  The Bum Brothers became very jealous of Rick Dog’s operations and they felt cheated by their boss.  The Bums began to conspire in secret against Rick Dog and they knew the prison leader and the head of La Tabla, Fernando Zayas would not approve of the removal of Rick Dog, in fact, he supported Rick Dog and put him in power as the street leader in the first place.  The Bums then began to supply Zayas with all the drugs he needed to get high on while behind bars.  Zayas had become addicted to drugs and the Bums made it worse.  It was then called out that Zayas was an addict and not fit to run the nation; therefore, he was expelled from leadership and kicked off La Tabla.  He would later renounce his membership in MLD.  The Bums secretly and successfully removed Zayas now their next step was removal of Rick Dog.  The Bum Brothers then added fuel to the Cobra/Disciple fire by going out and causing more trouble with Spanish Cobras making them mad and this led to an incident on February 7, 1996 (Hagedorn, The Insane Chicago Way, P. 202 and 203).  On that day at the street corner of Keystone and Armitage the Spanish Cobras opened fire at a Maniac Latin Disciple named Angel “Hi Lo” Alamo and shot him through his right cheek in his face and he was able to spit the bullet out.  This shooting angered the MLDs and now a call to action was needed for this, mainly the pressure came from the Twilight Zone as the Bums put heavy pressure on Rick Dog to respond to the attack they secretly started.  Talman and Wabansia was being feuded over by both Cobras and MLDs because on this street corner lots of money was to be made from drug sales and both gangs were frothing at the mouth.  At that current point in time the MLDs were running that street corner and were not going to let Cobras get in the way of success. On this day “Don Loco” held a meeting with his fellow MLDs to get revenge for the killing of “Wolfie” and the shooting of “Hi Lo” and also to show the Spanish Cobras not to touch Talman and Wabansia. The MLDs met at a house at Thomas and Washtenaw “Murdertown” to discuss a later meeting on Tuesday Feb 13th once again at Talman and Wabansia on exactly how they were going to get revenge.  The meeting was to be attended by about 30 top “Governors” of the gang.  The meeting was said to be so mandatory that if you missed it you would get a severe beating and you could not even get a pass from it even if your significant other was going to have your baby that day.  At that meeting Almodover said he wanted to “Take it to the Cobras” and wanted every Cobra dead.  He set up 3 teams of assassins that he handpicked as ones that he thought were potential killers and the others he waved off and told them to stay inside and out of the way.  The guns were brought out, an AK-47, a .380 and a .45 caliber pistol.  The shooters were instructed to dress in all black with black pants, black hoodies and black ski masks.  Don Loco also called for “Dome shots” meaning shoot the Cobras in the head only, by any means necessary.  Don Loco also ordered the shootings to happen at around 5 P.M. that evening when dusk was settling in and witnesses would have a hard time seeing the shooting or Cobras would have a hard time seeing the shooters coming.  This was also a shift change for the closest East Humboldt Park Chicago Police and also it was rush hour so traffic would slow down police and ambulance response times.  It was a carefully devised plan and it started on the street corner of Cortland and Mozart when team 1 struck with the AK-47 and shot at three Cobras hitting one of them in the hip and another in the neck but both survived.   Evergreen and Washtenaw was next when team 2 attacked which consisted of a MLD top enforcer who emerged from an alleyway and put a 16 year old Cobra in a head lock after he shot the Cobra as he tried to flee and told him he was going to die then shot him twice in the top of the head which left the young Cobra blind for the rest of his life.  Team 3 struck at Bosworth and Lemoyne and wounded another Cobra but once again no one was killed (Chicago Tribune August 29, 1996).

At Maplewood and Hirsch the Cobras struck back and shot a lady MLD in the back, but she survived.  Then a little while later Cobras opened fire again at MLDs again and shot a MLD in the neck at Rockwell and Cortez.  It took a few days for word to get back to “Don Loco” and the rest of the MLDN that not a single Cobra was killed.  To make it worse Almodover was arrested and later convicted and given a heavy sentence of a minimum of 45 years in prison which he is still serving time for.

More problems would come for the MLDs when a faction of the gang known as “The Bums” headed by Jaime “Tuffy” Ruiz would gear toward a complete takeover of the organization and Enrique “Rick Dog” Garcia stood in their way.  The Bums consisted not only of “Tuffy” but also old schooler Jose “Baby” Rodriguez who was the same “Baby” that helped Fernando “Prince Fernie” Zayas gun down Insane Unknowns in Andersonville in 1983, “Baby” got out of prison around this time after doing time for that shooting.  Other members were “Bum,” David “little Bum” Hernandez, “Dusty,” “Waldy,” “Fidel,” and “Bajia.”

Jamie “Tuffy Bums” Ruiz ordered the death of “Rick Dog” on April the 3rd 1996.  Garcia was shot dead in the driver seat of his car when gunman pulled up and shot him dead.  It was the first time an MLD Prince had been killed by fellow gang members.  There were over 1,000 attendees at Garcia’s funeral.  Light blue and black flowers shaped into a pitchfork were used at the service and gang members tossed several guns into Garcia’s casket as it lowered into the ground (Hagedorn, The Insane Chicago Way, P. 203).  With Garcia dead and Loco locked up, Francisco “Pimp Daddy” Garcia took over control the Maniac Latin Disciples, at least the side that opposed the Bums.

Shortly after the killing of Enrique Garcia, Pimp Daddy’s supporters shot and killed Ruiz for killing Garcia.  The “Bums” were then infuriated over the death of Ruiz and a civil war broke out within the MLDN between the Talman and Wabansia MLDs and the Rockwell and Potomac MLDs.

The “Bums” felt justified with killing Rick Dog because they felt he allowed Don Loco to recklessly carry out the shootings on Feb 13 of the Spanish Cobras that did not even result in a single Cobra getting killed, this is the pitch they delivered to get their supporters fired up to support the civil war.  The Garcia supporters, on the other hand, viewed this as a treasonous act and wanted vengeance for this.  After Tuffy Bum was killed Little Bum took over leadership and guided the Twilight Zone branch into the war.

The war within the MLDs was rough for both sides of MLDs and many soldiers were killed during this war.  One killing that caused a lot of pain was the shooting death of two best friends “Papote” and “Ears” from Rockwell and Potomac that were both shot together and double funeral needed to be held.  Papote and Ears were loved deeply by the MLDs and their families so these deaths caused fury.  Both men were shot and killed on August 9, 1996.  They were both shot to death behind a business on North Avenue because they were Rockwell and Potomac backing Lemoyne and Washtenaw MLDs.  A rumor traveled that they were going to transfer to Talman and Wabansia and it was said one of the Bums killed them.

Another example of a well-known shooting case was the case that surrounded the wrongfully convicted Jaime “Necko” Hauad.  The Kedzie and Berry and Rockwell and Potomac sections were allied against the Talman and Wabansia and Belden and Kenneth section, therefore, the war was still bad between Rockwell and Potomac against Talman and Wabansia.

On the night of May 21st 1997,  Kenneth and Belden MLD member Miguel Salgado and Talman and Wabansia MLDs Jason Goral and Jose Morales were leaving a bar together at Kenneth and George (Hermosa neighborhood) and as they walked on George Street someone shot all three of them killing Goral and Morales while wounding Salgado in the shoulder.  Salgado fled the scene and was found collapsed at a convenience store then was taken to the hospital by the police.  A witness to the shooting claimed she saw Jaime Hauad standing over the two slain men with a pistol in hand then walked away.  Jaimie was indeed in the area driving around in the neighborhood looking to see if his friends were the ones shot.  Jaime was part of the Kedzie and Berry MLDs and when police picked him up on a traffic stop about 2 hours later in the neighborhood they figured it was an easy case especially since the witness identified him in photographs.  Jaime was convicted of the slaying and was not released until 2018 when his conviction was finally overturned.

In 1997, the war with Insanes went into permanent effect after the YLO Cobras shot and killed “Omski” from the MLDs in an Aldi parking lot on Armitage Avenue.  Omski was putting groceries in his car alongside his wife when he was “Lil Minor” a known YLOC gunner spotted him and gunned him down.  Omski was the chief of the Beldon and Kenneth chapter of MLDs and had a run in with Lil Minor and Omski pistol whipped Lil Minor some months prior, so Lil Minor was seeking revenge.  This sparked the MLDs and Spanish Cobras into permanent war that could only be frozen during the annual Puerto Rican day parade.

In the spring of 1999, the Maniac Latin Disciples and Spanish Cobra leadership decided it was finally time to end this vicious war between them and hold a peace conference at the YMCA located at 1834 North Lawndale Ave in the Logan Square neighborhood.  Leaders of both Maniac street gangs like MLDs, YLO Disciples, Maniac Campbell Boys and Latin Stylers showed up, and leaders of the Insane family such as Spanish Cobras, YLO Cobras, Ashland Vikings, C-Notes, Insane Dragons, Insane DeucesLatin Lovers and Orquestra Albany showed up.

Peace was agreed upon right away and the bitter 1990s war of the Insanes and Maniacs was finally going to end; however, not all MLDs felt like it should end.  The renegade group of MLD supporters led by “Little Bum” did not attend the meeting instead they drove around the meeting and set up lots of teenage soldiers outside the meeting.  When peace was announced the teens began screaming out gang slogans and screaming about how they wanted no peace.  The leaders of the gangs then left the meeting in a hurry because bad stuff was about to go down.  One leader got stranded, “Carlito,” as he exited the meeting alone and when he stepped out front of the YMCA Thomas “Outlaw” Ross, a member of the MLDs, gunned him down.  This brought the end not only to peace talks for the warring families but also for the whole SGD/La Tabla.  That June day of 1999 brought the end of the old school gang ways as we know it (Hagedorn, The Insane Chicago Way, P. 206).

By the year 2001, the elder Cobras and MLDs couldn’t even freeze the war for the Parades and carnivals as the war had gotten that bad.

The MLDs would end up losing several sections going into the 21st century mainly due to gentrification of hipsters and yuppies in Wicker Park, Logan Square and East Humboldt Park.  The gang is still the second or third largest Latino gang in the city numbering thousands of members.  It is also clear that MLDs have always operated with the same principles that were passed down from Hilter to rule as kings and tax all others involved in the drug trade and this has led to more wars for the MLDs to fight, regardless, the MLDs have proven they can dominate with having little to no allies on the streets.

Please send in old school pics.   1960s pics will be especially appreciated!

Questions:

What happened to Prince Diablo?