DA, Port Arthur Police file gang injunction - 12 News KBMT and K-JAC. News, Weather and Sports for SE Texas

DA, Port Arthur Police file gang injunction

PORT ARTHUR - Jefferson County District Attorney Cory Crenshaw and the Port Arthur Police Department are filing a civil injunction. Its part of an effort to combat gang related activity in Port Arthur.

The role of the injunction will be to specify certain areas that will be considered "safety zones."

Gang members who are served an injunction must adhere to certain conditions. For instance, not wearing their affiliation's colors or hanging out with other members in those zones.

Detective Marcelo Molfino with Port Arthur PD said it means they do not have to wait for a crime to occur to take action.

Some are worried this will give law enforcement an over reaching amount of authority to arrest anyone they want, but Molfino, who helped develop the plan, said the injunction will target specific gang members who have a history of criminal activity.

"It's not like you get to pick somebody and say ‘hey you're a bad guy we're going to get you,’” Molfino said.

"It's up to us to keep the documentation and prove this individual is not only committing criminal acts individually but also as part of this criminal street gang," he said.

It will be the first of its kind in Jefferson County but Crenshaw said it has already proven to be successful.

"The law allows it, this process has been vetted by other jurisdictions, states and courts,” Crenshaw said.

“Everything we’re doing here we believe will have great benefits for the community," he said.

Molfino said the safety zones will be announced once the injunction is officially passed, and he said they plan to eventually implement gang injunctions throughout Jefferson County.

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