- Brianna Arrington, 20, was nearly killed in April 2020, just days after joining Outlaw Bloods gang in Norfolk, Virginia, and then trying to leave
- Arrington said she was pistol-whipped in the face, beaten in front of her 2-year-old son and had bleach pouring down her throat
- She was later shot through her right eye, stabbed in the head and back, and left to die in her Mercedes
- Arrington’s son was taken 5 miles away and abandoned in the street, where a sanitation worker found him in pouring rain
- Police arrested in June 2020 ten alleged gang members in connection with the attack on Arrington
- Arrington lost her right eye and hearing in her right ear, but was able to testify in December 2020
A Virginia mother was savagely beaten in front of her sobbing two-year-old son, had bleach poured down her throat, was shot through the eye, stabbed multiple times and left for dead after attempting to leave a Bloods offshoot gang she had joined just days earlier, according to prosecutors.
Brianna Arrington, 20, was found bloodied and clinging to life in the front seat of a Mercedes nine hours after her tormentors had tried their best to kill her in April 2020.
The gang members then took Arrington’s son, drove him 5 miles and dumped him in the street, where hours later a sanitation worker found the toddler wandering alone in a downpour.
Assistant Commonwealth’s Attorney Katie Beye said during a hearing earlier this month that Arrington is lucky to be alive, despite having lost an eye and the hearing in her right ear.
‘She was beaten by all of the members of the gang that were there. She was pistol-whipped. She was stabbed multiple times, possibly strangled,’ the prosecutor recounted in court, as reported by The Virginian-Pilot.
More than 15 months after the near-fatal attack, the case against Arrington’s 10 accused would-be killers, all suspected members of the Outlaw Bloods street gang from Norfolk, is still winding its way through Virginia’s court system.
During a preliminary hearing in December, about eight months after her brush with death, Arrington testified during a preliminary hearing about her harrowing ordeal.
As she testified, she removed her prosthetic eye to show her horrific wound to the court.
Arrington said she was working two jobs to support her two-year-old son but was still homeless when in November 2019 she met Skylar ‘Thump’ Webb, 18, who, in turn, introduced her to fellow members of the Outlaw Bloods, according to police.
Arrington claimed she did not know at first that her new acquaintances were gang members.
They let her stay with her son at an apartment in the Arlay Point apartment complex, and seemed to take care of one another.
‘I wanted to be part of a family,’ Arrington told the court during the hearing in December. ‘They gave me a place to stay. I was homeless. Me and my son didn’t have nowhere to go, and that’s where I went because I thought they were cool people.’
Arrington eventually learned that her adoptive ‘family’ was, in fact, a violent street gang, and by mid-April its members invited her to join.
‘I said I wanted to be part of a family,’ Arrington testified. ‘I didn’t want to be any part of any gang.’
Arrington’s initiation ceremony consisted of her being ‘jumped in,’ or beaten by all the members of the gang for more than 20 minutes, during which she was expected to fight back.
The young mom said she was not a good gang member and had a hard time learning secret handshakes and Bloods history and traditions. Every time she got something wrong, Arrington was subjected to a beating.
In the first few days as a gang member, Arrington said she was physically punished up to a half-dozen times. But that was only a prelude to the horror that would unfold on April 23.
That night, Arrington was sent to pick up pizza and bring it to the gang’s headquarters for a dinner-and-a-movie night.
As the gang members were watching the new remake of The Lion King, Arrington was quizzed on Bloods lore and was again beaten for getting the answers wrong.
The situation escalated after Arrington supposedly spoke to a higher-ranking gang member in a rude manner, earning her a more severe beating.
The 20-year-old rookie gang member then approached the alleged leader of the local gang, Brandon ‘Sayso’ Winnegan, 31, and asked him for permission to part ways with the group, telling him she was not ‘built for this stuff.’
‘I said, “I’m not that type of person. I don’t know how to do all this. It wasn’t me, and I’m not OK with it,”’ Arrington said from the witness stand. ‘I wasn’t built for this.’
Instead of giving Arrington her ‘walking papers’ – slang for permission to leave the gang – Winnegan announced to the entire group that the new recruit wanted out, then allegedly punched her in the face.
Suspects Toparshia Hodges and Asja Smith-Moore allegedly told the leader that Arrington would have to be killed because she knew too much about the gang and might talk.
Arrington recounted how suspect Xavier Walker stuffed one of her own socks in her mouth to muffle her screams and beat her in front of her crying toddler son.
Winnegan allegedly pistol-whipped Arrington in the face, choked her and poured bleach into her mouth while others pinned her to the floor.
‘He tried to drown me with bleach,’ she said.
The gang members later carried Arrington out to her silver Mercedes parked downstairs and placed her in the driver’s seat with her son in her lap, but she could not drive away because she did not have her car keys.
Arrington said the attackers then surrounded the car, with at least six of them brandishing guns. Hodges accused the 20-year-old of ‘not being a good mother’ because she was holding her son in her arms for protection.
Arrington agreed to place the boy in the backseat.
She honked the horn to get someone’s attention, but to no avail.
‘I can’t remember anything else after that,’ Arrington said in court. ‘It just went black.’
Next, Arrington was reportedly moved to another location, where she was stabbed multiple times in the head and back, shot through her right eye, with the bullet miraculously missing her brain and exiting through her right ear, and left to die in the car.
Beye, the prosecutor, told the court the suspects decided to spare the child’s life out of concern that killing him would spark an intense police response.
Seven hours after Arrington’s child was found, police received a 911 call about a woman inside a bullet-riddled Mercedes parked in the 500 block of Glendale Avenue.
An officer who responded to the scene described Arrington as covered in blood, with both her eyes swollen shut.
‘I assumed that she was dead. I didn’t expect her to respond,’ said the officer.
But when the cop called out to her, Arrington stirred and grunted in response.
The brutal violence cost the 20-year-old woman her right eye, and she also cannot hear out of her right ear.
At the time of her testimony in December, Arrington said she was taking 28 pills every day and was looking to undergo at least six surgeries to repair some of the extensive damage to her body.
‘I used to wake up screaming and hollering and crying a lot, and fighting in my sleep,’ she said.
In June 2020, police in Norfolk arrested the 10 alleged members of the Outlaw Bloods in connection with the attack on Arrington, identified as: Brendon Winnegan; Deondre Watkins; Javonne Hodges; Toparshia Hodges; Asja Smith-Moore; Sadia Brown; Ginger McAfee; Skylar Webb; Tavarrius Mitchell and Xavier Walker, reported 13NewsNow.
Charges against the suspects include malicious wounding; use of firearm in commission of a felony; abduction; mob assault; conspiracy to commit felony; grand larceny; gang hazing; gang participating, and gang recruitment.