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Thursday, 16 February 2012

The McHenry County State’s Attorney’s Office has filed a civil lawsuit against the Latin Kings in an effort to target the gang’s presence in Harvard.

17:37 |

The suit falls under the Illinois Street Gang Terrorism Omnibus Prevention Act and aims for the infrastructure of the gang rather than just individual gang members.
The suit’s goal is essentially to give police and prosecutors another tool to fight gangs by preventing known members from associating with each other.
Donna Kelly, chief of the McHenry County State’s Attorney’s Civil Division, said the office worked with Harvard officials for months. Similar lawsuits filed by other counties, including DuPage and Boone, were reviewed.
“The whole purpose of the lawsuit is to curtail gang recruitment and to keep the community safe,” she said. “We’re hoping that this does have a deterrent effect on individuals who are either seeking out a gang or trying to recruit other members.”
Five men are named in the suit as members of the Latin Kings: Antonio M. Figueroa, Alfredo Garcia-Castilla, Justin Pena, Genaro Pena, and Spencer M. L. Ortiz.
Prosecutors said the men – as well as other unnamed defendants – committed “numerous” gang-related crimes from 2000 through 2010. For example, Garcia-Castilla was convicted of aggravated battery for hitting another man in the chest with a metal pipe in July 2007.
The lawsuit, filed last week, also cites several other incidents in which victims were hit and kicked or had windows of their home broken.
Kelly prosecuted Figueroa in 2006 when he was convicted of mob action and sentenced to four years in prison for a fight outside a Harvard bar.
“Evidence at the trial overwhelmingly showed that the offense was gang-related,” she said.
The suit is seeking a permanent injunction preventing identified gang members from “standing, sitting, walking, driving, gathering, or appearing anywhere in public view” with any known Latin King gang member.
Outside of home or work, they would not be allowed to have anything that could be used as a weapon, including guns, knives, any kind of bludgeon, bricks or switch blades.
They also would be prohibited from having anything that can be used to create graffiti, throwing gang signs, or displaying tattoos with gang-related markings.DISCLAIMER:Text may be subject to copyright.This blog does not claim copyright to any such text. Copyright remains with the original copyright holder

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