A hearing about whether to impose a preliminary gang injunction against 40 alleged Norteño gang members in the Fruitvale neighborhood began nearly three months ago. On Friday afternoon, after weeks of exhibiting evidence and bringing forth witnesses, lawyers from both sides presented their final arguments to Judge Robert Freedman.
During a two-day conference last week, Youth ALIVE! hosted the third annual National Network of Hospital-based Violence Intervention Programs National Conference at Oakland’s Preservation Park. Over 120 representatives from non-profits across the country met to discuss strategies on how to stop the “revolving door” of young gunshot victims who are treated at urban emergency rooms, only to return later.
Testimony about the proposed Fruitvale gang injunction hearing concluded on Monday after two months of witness appearances by alleged Norteño gang members, gang experts, and police officers. Probation Officer Dalen H. Randa, who testified on Monday, was the last witness to be called to the stand.
Jesus Campos, a prominent business owner and community leader, was shot and killed outside of his Fruitvale restaurant at 5:36 a.m. Friday morning. Police believe that Campos, 58, unwittingly disrupted a robbery attempt at Otaez Restaurant on International Boulevard and was shot by the robbery suspects.
With homicide numbers already deep in the double digits this year, Oakland has a reputation for being one of California’s most violent and crime-plagued cities. But that won’t stop students at Castlemont High School in East Oakland from working hard to change that.
An intimate gathering was held Thursday night to celebrate the tenth anniversary of the Khadafy Washington Foundation for Non-Violence, an organization founded by heartbroken parent turned community leader, Marilyn Washington Harris. In August 2000, Harris’ 18-year-old son Khadafy Washington was shot and killed. In 2001, she started the foundation to meet the needs of homicide victims’ family members.
Alameda County Superior Court Judge Robert Freedman heard testimony from three more witnesses on Wednesday about the proposed Fruitvale gang injunction. There’s still no end in sight as to when the hearing will conclude and the judge will decide whether to impose the injunction against 40 alleged Norteño gang members in the Fruitvale neighborhood.
Last October, Oakland City Attorney John Russo proposed a gang injunction against 40 alleged members of the Nortenos gang in the Fruitvale neighborhood. This is Oakland’s second proposed gang injunction. It’s a controversial legal theory that says gang activity is a public nuisance that prevents non-gang members from enjoying peace in their communities.
Abel Manzo, one of the alleged gang members named in the Fruitvale gang injunction, was the only person to testify in the hearing on Wednesday. His lawyer, Jose Luis Fuentes, used his line of questioning to paint a picture of Manzo as a person who had some minor run-ins with the police but was never involved in gangs.