Judge Bob Brotherton, presiding judge of the 30th District Court, made it official yesterday by signing an injunction which limits street gang members activities, according to an article in the Wichita Falls Times Record News today, Friday, July 18. Twenty-eight members of the Vario Carnales are enjoined under this injunction.
First Assistant District Attorney John Gillespie praised the injunction in a news release. He described it as a valuable asseet in the fight against gang violence in Wichita Falls, Texas.
Some of the activities prohibited by the injunction include traveling in a vehicle at night, occupying a vehicle with illegal drugs or weapons and threatening others.
The Wichita County District Attorney's Office and Wichita Falls City Attorney's office made Texas law enforcement history in 2006 when they became the first city to obtain gang injunctions in the Lone Star State. Since that time the two offices have been successful in obtaining gang injunctions against the Puro Lil Mafia, North Side Crips and Hoova Crip gang.
Members of the District Attorney's Office were successful in arguing before Texas appellate judges to have the gang injunctions declared legal.
Meredith Kennedy, chief civil prosecutor for the district attorney's office, said in the press release that the VC is a dangerous and violent street gang. She also attributed drive-by shootings, assaults, graffiti and other criminal activities to the gang.
Then District Attorney Barry Macha argued the case in front of the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals in Austin in 2010. Chief Appellant Attorney John Brasher and Assistant District Attorney James Suter helped prepare the State's brief and accompanied Macha to Austin for the arguments.
Macha said at the time the Court upheld the gang injunctions, "This is a precedent-setting case."
Gillespie said at that time, "The DA's office will continue to work with the Wichita Falls Police Department, the Texas Gang Task Force and the City Attorney's Office to get these offenders off our streets and behind bars where they belong."
Kinley Hegglund, Deputy City Attorney, who helped draft the gang injunction in 2007 said at the time, "The threat of losing your cellphone and no longer being able to drive through town wearing your colors takes away from the coolness factor."
Wichita Falls law enforcement deserves credit for being innovative in the war against crime violence on the streets of this city of 105,000.
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