News release - 7/9/2012
Published 7/9/2012 (all press releases for this day)
Chief of Police
Oxnard Police Department
R. Jason Benites
OXNARD POLICE DEPARTMENT
(Oxnard, CA) The Oxnard Police Department and Ventura County District Attorney’s Office jointly announced today that the Superior Court approved their petition to remove 81 named individuals from the city’s two gang injunction lists. The individuals were removed from the gang injunction restrictions because they are no longer believed to be active gang members. This assessment was made by gang detectives from the Oxnard Police Department, and the petition and hearing was facilitated by the District Attorney’s Office.
Oxnard’s gang injunctions were issued in 2005 and 2006 in an effort to address a high number of crimes committed by gang members in Oxnard. Oxnard’s gang injunctions apply to two gangs – the Colonia Chiques and Southside Chiques. Since 1992, the Colonia Chiques gang is believed to be responsible for more than 2,000 crimes in Oxnard. The Southside Chiques are believed to be responsible for more than 1,000 crimes in Oxnard in recent years.
Gang injunctions are civil lawsuits against street gangs authorized by law because the behavior of these individuals creates a public nuisance that harms the ability of community members to enjoy a peaceful quality of life. Injunctions apply to specific geographic areas called “safety zones” and to only those documented gang members who have been served with copies of the injunction. The safety zones were designated based upon the areas of criminal activity by each gang.
Injunctions seek to improve the quality of life of residents and workers in the safety zones, reduce gang crime, and encourage gang members to change their lifestyle and behavior while, at the same time, deterring our youth from joining a gang in the first place. Injunctions also enhance the ability of law enforcement to re-allocate resources to focus on other crime trends and issues.
The Oxnard Police Department and Ventura County District Attorney filed a motion with the court to dismiss 81 individuals from the two injunctions who are not presently viewed as active gang members. The motion was granted on June 29, 2012, and the affected individuals will be notified. In the event that any of these individuals become involved in criminal activity in the future, police officers may re-serve them with the injunction. There are 276 active gang members who remain on the Colonia injunction and 66 on the Southside injunction. The Oxnard Police Department intends to conduct periodic reviews of its lists of enjoined persons.
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