Judge grants injunction against Monrovia street gangs

Judge grants Monrovia gang injunction — more to folo

*Important to note that the shooting death of a white man Tuesday night took place inside the injunction zone
* Here’s the update

LOS ANGELES – After a brief hearing, Superior Court Judge David Jaffe today granted an injunction filed in October by the city of Monrovia and Los Angeles County aimed at limiting gang activity in the area.

The judge denied a request by three alleged members of the Duroc Crips gang who appeared in court and asked to be excluded from the injunction, which also names the Monrovia Nuevo Varrio gang.

The gangs have battled for years, and gang violence led to four deaths in in late 2007 and early 2008.

Deputy District Attorney Deanne Castorena, who has worked on several gang injunctions in L.A. County, said after the hearing that the injunction would dramatially help curb gang activity in the region.

“In the other communities we’ve seen a drastic reduction and visibility of the gangs,” she said, “and I expect that to happen here.”

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Violent Monrovia gangs targeted by prosecutors

MONROVIA – Prosecutors have targeted two violent street gangs blamed for several racially motivated shootings and slayings over the past three years as part of a proposed gang injunction, according to court documents obtained Tuesday.

In all 17 suspected members of the mostly Latino Monrovia Nuevo Varrio gang and 21 suspected members of the mostly black Duroc Crips are singled out in the documents.

The injunction is being sought by both the Monrovia City Attorney’s Office and the Los Angeles County District Attorney.

“MNV and DuRoc members fire upon one another, upon other gang rivals and upon members of opposite races in the community,” according to the complaint, which was filed Oct. 9. “Residents hear shots fired in the night and live in fear of shootings and random violence breaking out at any moment on the street, sidewalks, and local parks in their neighborhood.”

Here’s the 

Monrovia Gang Injunction- Complaint.pdf

 naming several gang members and listing some of the activities they are suspected of being involved with.

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US Attorney General Holder to visit LA

This from a Department of Justice press release:

Attorney General Holder will hold a press conference at the DEA’s Los Angeles field office to announce Recovery Act funds for the administration’s Southwest border strategy.  The Attorney General will be joined by Timothy J. Landrum, DEA Special Agent in Charge of the Los Angeles Field Office; Ralph W. Partridge, DEA Special Agent in Charge of the San Diego Field Office; and local law enforcement officials.

Holder needs to be asked about federal efforts to infiltrate gangs working the neighborhoods of suburban Los Angeles. We’ll monitor the press conference and address Holder with some local questions that require federal answers.

Any suggestions for what we should ask?

Let me know…

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Latino gangs targeted in hate crime sweep

While local public officials continue to deny the existence of brown on black hate crime, the FBI cracked down on a Hawaiian Gardens gang responsible for several heinous crimes.

From the Associated Press:

Federal and local agencies were conducting a series of arrests targeting members and associates of the Varrio Hawaiian Gardens street gang, U.S. Attorney’s Office spokesman Thom Mrozek said.

A series of federal racketeering indictments was due to be unsealed later Thursday, detailing firearms, narcotics and other charges related to the attacks, Mrozek said.

Further details were not released, but Mrozek said the indictments would detail the attacks on several black victims.

The indictments mark at least the second time in less than two years that federal authorities have alleged that Latino gang members attacked black residents because of their race. Local officials have tried to downplay any racial tensions.

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Brothers suspected in Covina attack

Something about this case struck a nerve in Covina. I’ve had tons of phone calls about the neighborhood, which is an apparently drug and gang infested portion of Covina that gets little in the way of daily police attention.

Cops first described the victim Ocie May as a transient, but his family, residents of Covina, insisted that Ocie was anything but a transient.

Witnesses said they called and offered police information after the slaying but were never contacted by detectives.

The suspects’ sister insists her brothers are innocent and have been set up.

Here’s the story:

COVINA – A pair of brothers have been arrested in connection with the shooting death of a man in a dark alley, authorities said Monday.

Arrested on suspicion of murder were Arnett and Wakeem Ghoston, police said.

Killed was Ocie Daniel May, 26, a Covina resident.

Arnett was being held in lieu of $1 million, according to Los Angeles County jail records. Joaquin had not been booked as of 7:30 p.m. Monday.

“We’ve got the two in custody,” Covina police Sgt. Rick Walczak said.

The arrest of two men in connection with the shooting matches a description provided by a witness to the shooting Monday.

May, 26, was slain in an alleyway in the 600 block of East Ruddock Street. Police said the killing followed an altercation that occurred about 8 p.m. Thursday.

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Baldwin Park a.m. gang sweep nets 12 arrests

Jennifer McLain and Raul Roa took a ride with Baldwin Park police officers during an early morning raid of suspected gang members and taggers. Among the crews hit were North Side and East Side Bolen as well as KHA and MIK. Their criminal backgrounds included felony vandalism, grand theft and assault with a deadly weapon.

Apparently some of the gang members are involved in weird rituals. There were Oreo cookies sacrificed to statues of the Grim Reaper and tales of Brujo blessings that included cutting the head off a rooster to bless a cocaine stash:

Here’s a bit of Jennifer’s story:


BALDWIN PARK – Twelve people were arrested
Thursday morning in sweep targeting the homes of 32 Baldwin Park area
parolees, most of whom were juveniles, and some who had ties to local

Neither the fog nor the sun had risen yet as officers pounded the door of a 17-year-old parolee.

Around 5:45 a.m., five men shuffled out of the one-bedroom
apartment next to the on-ramp of the 10 Freeway as Baldwin Park Police
hunted for the teenager who was on probation for tagging and resisting

They sat, some shirtless, others sockless, and all shivering,
on crates and the cold cement as police searched the house for the

After a 15 minute search, cops found him hidden in the closet
under a pile of clothes. Police also found two bongs, baggies of
marijuana, a drug scale, two cans of empty spray bottles and a tagged
bottle of Miller High Life.

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More gang members on ICE

A story that will appear in tomorrow’s Daily Bulletin notes that United States immigration officials arrested nearly 2000 gang members in 2008. Here’s the meat:

Authorities with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement announced on Friday that they arrested nearly 2,000 gang members and associates last year in a national anti-gang operation.

ICE officials said more than 850 of them have been prosecuted on state and federal charges, including re-entry after deportation and weapons violations. The remainder, who are considered foreign national gang members, have been placed in deportation proceedings, ICE officials said.

The arrests occurred in Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino, Ventura, Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo counties.

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Gang violence flares up in Monrovia — again

It was a year ago this week that a racial tensions in Monrovia flared up and resulted in a gang war that left four people dead and several wounded.

Things got heated when Sanders “Pete” Rollins was shot and killed in front of his home on Sherman. It only got worse when teens Sammantha Salas and Brandon Lee were also shot and killed in what appeared to be retaliatory attacks.

Last night, neighbors got a terrible reminder of that violence when Rollins’ former home was shot up again.

Here’s a letter (not edited)  I received from a neighbor, who is scared and concerned that the violence is about to get worse:


Continue reading “Gang violence flares up in Monrovia — again” »

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LA gang shooting claims the life of a five-year-old

A gang shooting in Los Angeles near Echo Park claimed the life of a four-year-old. Here’s what the LA Times reported this a.m.:

A 4-year-old boy walking with his sister was shot and killed Tuesday afternoon south of Angelino Heights, Los Angeles police officials reported.

LAPD Deputy Chief Sergio Diaz said that at least one person opened fire on a red car driving down the street, and one of the shots apparently struck the boy in the chest. The shooting occurred in the 1200 block of Court Street about 4:25 p.m.

“Word has gotten out that a child has been killed here,” Diaz said, adding that neighbors were gathered on their front porches. 

The boy was taken by ambulance to a hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

Two years ago in the same neighborhood, a 9-year-old girl was standing in the kitchen of her home as her mother rinsed dishes, when gang members drove up to a house across the street and exchanged shots with rival gang members, police said. None of the gang members were injured. But one bullet tore through the front wall of the girl’s home, passed through the living room and struck the girl in the head.

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