David Briley and John Cooper Mum on Alleged MS-13 Gang Member in Nashville


Outgoing Nashville Mayor David Briley and members of his staff have nothing to say about the illegal immigrant authorities arrested this week for allegedly kidnapping and beating a local high school student.

Mayor-Elect John Cooper has nothing to say either, at least not now.

The Tennessee Star contacted representatives for both men Wednesday.

That illegal immigrant, Franklin Jefferson Pineda-Caceres, 18, is allegedly an MS-13 gang member.

We asked Briley’s spokesman Thomas Mulgrew a variety of questions including whether, in hindsight, Briley’s recent executive order mandating city officials not cooperate with ICE jeopardizes public safety.

Mulgrew’s emailed response: “No comment.”

Meanwhile, a woman at John Cooper’s office, who only identified herself as Katie, also declined comment.

“We are really aiming to allow John to focus on the transition right now as much as possible to ensure everything runs smoothly,” Katie said.

“Once he has been sworn in, we will definitely be happy to answer these types of questions on behalf of the mayor’s office.”

Nashville Police spokesman Don Aaron declined to answer our questions and sent a copy of Pineda-Caceres’ arrest warrant.

As The Star reported, Pineda-Caceres continuously tried to recruit a Glencliff High School student into the infamous gang in January.

The student, however, did not want to join MS-13, so Pineda-Caceres and two other men traveled to the high school and allegedly forced him into his vehicle.

While in the car, these three men allegedly beat the student after he continued to refuse their requests to join the gang. After allegedly beating him, the three gang members dropped the student back off at the high school. Metro School officials launched an investigation into the alleged kidnapping and found nothing had happened.

Three months after the alleged attack, the student came forward because he experienced pain in his ribs. Police tried to arrest Pineda-Caceres in July where he was staying, but he fled the police by driving through his front yard and almost hit three people.

According to NewsChannel 5, a citizen reported to police he saw a vehicle matching the MS-13 gang member’s vehicle going 100 mph on Briley Parkway.

The 18-year-old was caught by police when he got into a car crash on Sept. 8. Police found cocaine, marijuana and a scale in Pineda-Caceres’s car.

On Monday, police booked Pineda-Caceres on “aggravated kidnapping, three counts of assault with a deadly weapon (vehicle), four counts of possession of a controlled substance, possession of drug paraphernalia and immigration violation,” according to Fox 17.

Currently, Pineda-Caceres is being held in jail on a $109,000 bond. Also, the DOJ is charging him with re-entering America illegally, which means he faces up to two years behind bars and a $250,000 fine.

The gang member was deported in 2016 after he was caught illegally entering the United States two years earlier. Previously, Metro police arrested him in 2017 on drug crimes. After being arrested, he was again deported in 2018 but re-entered the country illegally.

“The Department of Justice said Pineda-Caceres was deported from the country to Honduras in May 2018,” NewsChannel 5 reported.

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Chris Butler is an investigative journalist at The Tennessee Star. Follow Chris on Facebook. Email tips to [email protected]
Photo “David Briley” by David Briley. Photo “John Cooper” by John Cooper. 




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4 Thoughts to “David Briley and John Cooper Mum on Alleged MS-13 Gang Member in Nashville”

  1. […] The Tennessee Star reported last month, an alleged MS-13 gang member, Franklin Jefferson Pineda-Caceres, continuously tried to recruit a […]

  2. […] reported this week, authorities arrested illegal immigrant Franklin Jefferson Pineda-Caceres, 18, for allegedly […]

  3. “Metro School officials launched an investigation into the alleged kidnapping and found nothing had happened”

    This is the crux of the problem. No one wants to do anything. Everyone is afraid of being branded a racist (or whatever claim of the day.) Inaction often leads to death. That this kid is still alive to tell about his ordeal is nothing short of miraculous. More often than not, these targets don’t live. Witnesses are counter-productive to gangs.

    If Cooper doesn’t step up, he going to have more on his plate than he bargained for.

  4. Steve Allen

    I will give an example of why the Liberal faction of the Democratic Party (the group that seems to be calling the shots these days) are the enemy of law abiding Americans. In one breath they want to take away certain firearms that, in addition to hunting and target shooting, are used for self defense. Then in the next breath they want open borders that will allow anyone into the country with no concerns for their backgrounds. What is with you people? There has to be some misguided agenda at work here that puts the safety and security of the individual behind the needs of the many….oh ya, it’s called Socialism.