Will an injunction interfere with other Fullerton gang prevention efforts?


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Pastor Greg Reed and his wife Emily have been pastoring for only one year. Their small evangelical Christian church, Living Word Harvest, occupies a small space above a convenience store off of Lemon Drive and Valencia Avenue in Fullerton near the heart of the Maple neighborhood. If they would not have relocated here, they would have moved their services to Inglewood.

The Maple neighborhood is very unique compared to other ones Pastor Greg has seen.

“It is very family oriented,” he said. “Everyone knows everyone. There aren’t bullets flying everywhere. There are drug problems but we aren’t afraid of having our services here.”

Also present in the Maple neighborhood is Fullerton Tokers Town, a local gang for over 40 years, whose members are the subject of an injunction by the Orange County District Attorney. The injunction targets specific members in an attempt to lessen the public nuisance the DA claims they cause in the North Orange County area.

Pastor Greg recognizes many on the complaint list even though the church moved in just last year. Many he has spoken to during his outreach in the community; at least two visit his church.

The gang problem in Fullerton is nothing new. In fact, last year the city obtained a grant to help suppress its actions and work to help those at risk and the community improve their quality of life and reduce the violence associated with the gang.

But the recent injunction obtained by the OCDA threatens those efforts, as it restricts a wide swath of people and activities that can potentially send a mixed message to members of the community.

Read more at my blog The Other Side of the Tracks


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