Wayne “Silk” Perry is the most infamous gangster to ever walk the streets of Washington D.C. aka Drama City. He’s been called the Michael Jordan of the murder game. A professional head hitter and alleged killer. The streets hold a definite respect, a curious awe and a healthy amount of fear for the man they called Silk. “Wayne was one of those niggas that lived by the code, but played by his own rules.” Says E, a gangsta who came up under Silk. In the Chocolate City it was by any means necessary and Silk took this attitude to new extremes with his boldness in the face of adversity and challenges. Nobody was off limits to Silk and nothing was undoable. According to police, Silk was legendary for his willingness to kill at will- in broad daylight, up close and personal, in front of the police- it didn’t matter if you were on his hit list you could be killed anywhere in front of anyone. There was nowhere to hide, it’s alleged that Silk would lay in wait for his prey all night until he got his opportunity to strike. Murder, robbery, drug dealing and extortion were said to be his business and he took it seriously. He prided himself as a man that could put his mind to whatever he wanted, as he conquered all aspects of the game.
Wayne Perry is the man who protected self-proclaimed Harlem drug lord and notorious snitch Alberto “Alpo” Martinez. Working as an enforcer for the so-called Martinez organization, a powerful DC-based drug ring, Silk acted as bodyguard and hitman for Alpo, who after he was apprehended by the law and arrested snitched on his too loyal right hand man, Wayne and countless others. But Silk didn’t get down like that. He took his on the chin and kept on fighting. He held true to the code of the streets that spawned him. He’s gone down in infamy, as one of the top soldiers from the Murder Capital. A true warrior and hustler who lives by the creed of death before dishonor. The Washington Post called him one of the District’s most heinous murderers, and almost fifteen years after his rise, the streets are still talking about him.
“Wayne was so smooth with that murder shit that when he first started killing for money in the city niggas didn’t even know who was knockin’ them heads. Niggas was talking about it was a hit man in town from Detroit somewhere,” a dude from the era says. And as Silk’s name took on the eminence of his actions, he quickly became one of the most feared dudes in the city. “Some niggas used to try to feed slim to keep him off they ass.” Manny says. “Rayful Edmond used to try to drop loads of shit down 203, but Wayne used to be like, ‘Nah, I’m cool. I don’t want nothing from you.’ He wanted to make his own way. He had a game plan.” It was said that when Wayne was on the streets, certain hustlers wouldn’t even drive nice cars because they didn’t want Wayne to think they were getting money. And weak dudes or those that were punks weren’t supposed to have shit as far as Wayne was concerned. Eighty percent of the dudes that fucked with him back then did so out of fear. When he started taking money for hits nobody was safe. If the price was right and the joker wasn’t in Wayne’s circle he had no problem killing them. There are stories of Silk sleeping in the yards of dudes that had money on their heads until he could get them. “I don’t play that across the street shit,” Wayne says. “I walk right up and put seven in the head like it ain’t shit.” The fear that he put in the hearts of some people was like no other.
In every hood there’s an individual whose supreme talent seems to be a penchant for murdering others for whatever reason. These individuals are elevated and upheld as heroes in their hoods and for good reason. “He went home in the late 80’s and looked out for all the men he left behind,” Sop-Sop says. “He did what he had to do to survive as a man in the streets.” And those things included terrorizing the streets of D.C. with homicides, shootings and armed kidnappings. It was in the heavy drug trafficking areas of Drama City where Silk plied his trade and made his name. Silk was a master philosopher when it came to that street shit. He played the streets like a game of chess. He was more than feared. “People feared Silk because he was said to have a lot of humps in the ground. People didn’t only fear that, they feared the fact that Silk got away with the shit he did.” Manny says. His reputation itself put an end to any investigations or court cases against him. Sop-Sop explains it another way, “I don’t think it was fear, but the possibility of what Wayne can manifest.” The dude was unpredictable. He kept people off balance and witnesses in check. Nobody knew what to expect. Maybe not even Wayne himself. That’s what made him so dangerous. In a world of ups and downs, betrayals and double-crosses he reigned king.
“He knew how to use fear and mind games real well.” E says. “He was one man that had a large percentage of the masses shook. He didn’t give a fuck what you thought about him as long as you didn’t cross the line. There were a lot of dudes in the streets at that time that were head hitters, but some of them moved on the D.L., you didn’t know they were killers unless you knew them. With Wayne it was a fear thing. Niggas knew he was about murder, it was no secret.” Wayne once bumped into a dude that was like that down Lorton, the dude thought he was still like that on the streets, Wayne told the dude, “You ain’t heard, I run the city.”
He was feared because of the many reasons that set his name to ringing. His name was behind a lot of things that were going on throughout the District. “A lot of people couldn’t understand how he was supposed to be behind so much shit and he was still moving around the city as if nothing was a problem.” E says. When shit went down and the drama jumped off dudes were like, “It was Wayne Perry and them.” He had a whole team of dudes that were very loyal to him. Wayne was the type of dude that if he came up on some kilo’s, he showed love, breaking it down with all his dudes. He might hit 30 dudes off with a couple of ounces each just on G.P. Just to inspire that loyalty to that do or die attitude. His team would go all out for him. No questions asked. They were a bunch of youngsters, and in their eyes Silk was a god.
“On the real, I think Wayne’s name started ringing because he was bussin’ ass. He wasn’t talking, it wasn’t no playing when it came to putting that work in, plus he had some serious killers on his team.” E says. Silk had a whole squad that he could sick on dudes in a minute. Wayne was the type of person that if dude had something and dude was weak or a sucker, then dude wasn’t supposed to have it. It didn’t matter what it was, Wayne was taking it and if dude didn’t like it, fuck it. Wayne only respected men. If a dude was a rat, he wasn’t supposed to breathe, let alone come out his hole. No matter how much money the rat had, spent or flashed or how hard he flossed, that shit meant nothing to Wayne. He was coming to get that. That bling-bling was his. Only integrity and heart counted to Silk. The whole, “he didn’t tell on me thing,” didn’t fly with Wayne Perry. Dudes had to play their position. And if their position was to be up under him and do what the fuck he said, then so be it. That’s how Silk played it. It was all or nothing with him. No half-stepping or in-betweens.
“One day me and Wayne went to pick up a bucket he had parked across town. He used the car to stash stuff in.” Manny says. “Wayne popped the trunk and he had hand grenades, sticks of dynamite and a rack of guns, coke and some more shit. We had this other dude with us too. Wayne threw the dude the keys to the bucket and told him to drive the car back around Potomac Gardens. The dude was like, ‘I can’t drive all that shit back around the way.’ Wayne pulled out his pistol and told the nigga, ‘You better get your ass in that car and take it around the Gardens and if the police pull you over tell them it’s my shit and if they take it I’m a kill your muthafuckin’ ass.’ The nigga got his ass in the car and did exactly what Wayne said. Silk ain’t play no games.” And dudes were wise not to fuck with him or try him in any way, because Wayne was quick to expose a dude and in vicious fashion. “One thing about Wayne, he went at whoever. If you was supposed to be like that and he had to see you he was gonna knock your head off. You would think he was some big 300 pound nigga, but when you see him he is this tall, skinny, funny nigga. Always joking and playing, but dangerous. Niggas didn’t want to be on his shit list.” Manny says.
There was no limit to the way Silk played either. He didn’t care who you were supposed to be, he was still going to play with you. He would play with you even if you weren’t trying to and if you got serious, he was cool with that too. A lot of times Wayne would try dudes he didn’t like by playing with them. “One time, me, Wayne and two other dudes were in my Benz on the way to the mall. Wayne knew that one of the dudes with us wasn’t who he thought he was in the streets. The dude was supposed to be a killer but Wayne could see through him. Wayne hated fake niggas. So Wayne starts playing with dude, trying to provoke him. When the dude gets fed up, he told Wayne to stop playing with him. Wayne said, ‘Nigga fuck you, I play when I want to and if I wanted to I could fuck you. You’s a bitch, you should be taking that dick.’ The dude gets heated and tells Wayne can’t no nigga fuck him. Wayne laughed at him and told him, ‘I ain’t no average nigga, I’m Silk and if you keep running your mouth I’m a leave your fake ass in this back seat with a hole in your head.’ I tried to tell the dude to leave the shit alone because I saw where it was going, Wayne was going to end up smokin’ the nigga. The dude wouldn’t let it go, his pride was in it. Wayne ended up telling the dude they could fight if he had something he needed to get off his chest. When we got to the mall Wayne took off his jacket and slapped the shit out of dude, he tried to make the nigga fight him but the dude wouldn’t fight. Wayne looked at us and said, ‘I told y’all this nigga was a bitch.’ Wayne then pulled out his pistol and makes the dude strip ass naked right in the parking lot, then he shot him in the ass and told him to get the fuck away from us. Everybody was laughing. Wayne exposed the nigga and it was all a big joke to Silk.” A dude from back in the day relates.
Wayne was on that extortion time real hard too. “He put me on a nigga one time, he wanted me to lean on the nigga.” Another one of Wayne’s old partners in crime says. “I put the squeeze on the nigga, told him I wanted 50 grand. I worked the move about two or three times and broke down with Silk every time. At the same time Silk was playing things with the nigga, getting close to him, making him think they were cool. Then Silk acted like he found out I was squeezing the nigga and told the nigga that he would get me to leave him alone for 50 G’s. From there he was milking the nigga for 50 G’s anytime he wanted to and he would still hit me off. Silk worked that move so many times on different niggas too, even some niggas that was supposed to be like that. It was like taking candy from a baby for Silk.” And when Silk’s friend came home from jail he used his reputation to put him back on his feet.
“I remember when I first came home from Lorton and was in the halfway house,” Manny says. “Wayne came to get me and told me to get in his CE and took me uptown. He asked me if I had money. I was just coming home, I was broke. I told him, no, so he said he was going to take me to get some money. We pull up in front of a well known spot that’s owned by some dudes that supposed to be major in the city. Wayne looked at me and said, ‘Go in there and tell such and such to send a bag of that money out here and don’t make me come in there and get it either.’ I thought Wayne was playing, he’s a real funny dude, always playing, but he was dead serious. So I went in the spot and told the dude what Wayne said and with no problem the dude gave me a bag full of money. Wayne had niggas scared to death.” He didn’t stop at street figures when it came to his extortion game either. It’s said that he went as far as extorting lawyers and Italians in Georgetown too. Silk was cool and calculating but he also fortified his bourgeoning reputation as the most feared man in D.C. with sporadic outbursts of violence that seemed to come out of nowhere with no rhyme or reason.
“I had a spot over Southwest on Orange Street. I had a few young dudes hustling for me,” another dude from the era relates. “One day Silk came over there to holla at me and me and slim was sitting in the apartment talking shit and joking when my little man came in the spot and told me that a New York dude around the corner told him that he couldn’t hustle until he was finished with his shit. Me and Wayne looked at each other and shook our heads. Wayne told shorty to go back outside and stand on the corner and sell his shit. Shorty acted like he was scared so I told him that if Silk said it was cool, then it was cool. The young dude went back outside and started pumping. As soon as the New York dude bent around the corner to say something to shorty, Wayne stepped out of the cut beside the building and hit his ass in the head with everything he had in the clip and stepped off with the hammer smoking. When the police and ambulance arrived, Wayne popped back up with a different set of clothes, just to see who was talking to the cops.” It seemed Wayne did what he did just because he could. His aura of fear was impregnable.
This is an excerpt from Street Legends. If you want to read the rest order the book right now.