Bay City News Service—Oakland police said they detained seven suspected gang members this morning, Friday, when they served multiple search warrants for suspects in a variety of violent crimes.
Oakland police Chief Howard Jordan said four of the search warrants were served in Oakland and one each were served in El Sobrante and Santa Cruz.
According to a report on KTVU-TV, one of the Oakland raids took place on 43rd Street near Telegraph Avenue, where two people were at least temporarily detained.
Jordan said Oakland police were assisted by SWAT teams from the sheriff's departments in Alameda, Contra Costa and Santa Cruz counties in serving the warrants.
No one was injured in the raids, Jordan said. Oakland police Capt. Ersie Joyner said that in addition to detaining seven suspects, officers seized semi-automatic guns and gang memorabilia.
Joyner said authorities will decide in the next few days how many of the seven people who were detained will be charged and how many will be released.
But he said, "We are confident these are the right people" who are on a list of suspected gang members police have been monitoring.
Jordan said the serving of the search warrants was "the culmination of a multi-agency investigation that started several months ago into violence in our city in the past year."
Jordan said the investigation also is an outgrowth of Oakland's "Operation Ceasefire," a multi-disciplinary approach to fighting violence that was launched last October.
The program involved having police, probation and parole officers work with community members such as pastors and crime victims to try to persuade members of gangs and other violent groups to try to lead more productive lives.
Jordan said the people who were detained today "didn't heed our warnings" about trying to change their lives around. He said the message today's actions are intended to send is, "Stop the violence, stop the shootings and stop the path you've taken of shooting and killing people. It's not acceptable."
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