Judge Bans 18th Street Gang
Issues Injunction Restricting Gang Activity in Jefferson Park
Los Angeles, Posted 5:15 p.m. July 11, 1997 — A Los Angeles Superior Court Judge issued an order today restricting activity of the 18th Street Gang, reported CBS 2 News.
The injunction order forbids gang members from gathering in public in groups of more than two in a designated area of the Jefferson Park neighborhood, said CBS 2 News’ Linda Breakstone.
Gang members left the courthouse quickly after the decision (pictured, above), said Breakstone, and for the most part avoided talking to the media.
“That man trying to set his own rules, ya know what I mean? But it ain’t going down like that, not in the neighborhood,” Gustavo Guzman, whose nickname is “Bullet,” told Breakstone as he hurried toward the parking lot.
In issuing his order the judge said there is sufficient evidence to show the 18 defendants named in the injunction were involved in gang and criminal activity, including robbery, drug sales, blocking sidewalks and urinating in public, reported The Associated Press.
The defendants are also forbidden to harass, intimidate or threaten neighborhood residents. Authorities have called the 18th Street gang one of the most notorious and violent gangs in the state, said AP.
The order prohibiting gathering in includes gathering on porches or attending backyard barbecues where they can be seen by other residents, said AP.
Violators can be arrested if they refuse to abide by the order. If found in possession of contraband, such as weapons or drugs, a misdemeanor charge can be enhanced to a felony, said AP.
They aren’t even allowed to carry graffiti tools, such as large markers, said Breakstone.
Many of the defendants claim they aren’t involved in a gang, and accuse the LAPD of engineering the situation. Breakstone said some even accused the LAPD of planting evidence.
“They’re just like gang members, put it like this,” Alexander Alverado (pictured), a.k.a. “Smokey,” told Breakstone. “LAPD, that’s a gang too. I’m an LAPD killer, you know, ’cause I hate ‘em. Why aren’t we in jail if we’re doing so much crime?”
The judge’s order takes effect July 21st, although an attorney representing some of the gang members says he’s considering an appeal, said AP.
Edited by C.C. Sandorfi Channel 2000 Staff Writer