Man killed Alexander crash believed to be part of national 'smash-and-grab' gang
|2018 mugshot of Cleveland Johnson|
The driver of a rented Chrysler 300 that slammed sideways into a tree in the Village of Alexander yesterday was apparently a member of a nationwide criminal enterprise known as the "Felony Lane Gang."
The gang members, often recognizable by their gold teeth, are known to smash into parked vehicles and then use stolen debit cards to obtain cash from bank accounts. When going to a bank, they use the lane furthest from the bank building, which makes it harder for security cameras to pick up identifying information. That lane is known as the "Felony Lane," hence the gang's name.
Cleveland D. Johnson, 22, of Lauderdale Lakes, Fla. was pronounced dead at the scene of the crash. The vehicle he was driving was stopped for a traffic violation in the Village of Warsaw but Johnson hit the gas after the police officer exited the patrol car and headed west on Route 20. At Varysburg, he turned north and an Attica PD patrol spotted the vehicle on Route 98 and attempted to pursue but soon broke off the pursuit because of the high rate of speed of the white Chrysler. Johnson lost control of the sedan as he entered the village and the car wrapped around a large tree in front of a residence on Main Road.
Johnson, according to Chief Deputy Brian Frieday, did have gold teeth.
One of Johnson's passengers, Clyde A. Frazier, 24, of Ft. Lauderdale, Fla., was seriously injured in the crash and remains in guarded condition (meaning he is in the intensive care unit) at Strong Memorial Hospital. A social media profile for a Clyde Frazier in Ft. Lauderdale shows multiple pictures of a young man with gold teeth.
The other passenger in the vehicle, Desarae N. Steriotis, 33, of Philadelphia, was taken by Mercy Flight to ECMC. Frieday said as of today, her injuries are no longer considered life threatening.
Frieday said investigators are still developing information about the suspects and didn't have anything to add about their activities in the area.
Johnson was arrested in Greenburgh, N.Y., in January 2018, along with three other individuals, who were all accused of being part of the "Felony Lane Gang." One of the other suspects, Tyrone Parker, bared his gold teeth for his mugshot.
The four people were suspected of taking part in a crime spree throughout New England and Upstate New York. At the time of their arrest, they were reportedly found in possession stolen checks, dozens of stolen credit and debit cards, and 25 stolen licenses from several different states.
In July, Johnson was arrested in Watervliet, along with two other suspects, charged with criminal possession of a stolen substance, a felony, and criminal impersonation, a misdemeanor.
The Felony Lane Gang is reportedly based in the Ft. Lauderdale area but operates nationally. There have been crimes and arrests reported in nearly every one of the lower 48 states.
Our news partner, 13WHAM reports that Frazier has a criminal record in Florida.