News Release


DATE: August 3, 2005

CONTACT STEVE SCHMIDT AT 619-531-4766 or 619-206-9108



SAN DIEGO - At the request of Supervisor Dianne Jacob, the San Diego County Board of Supervisors voted unanimously Tuesday to launch an East County Gang Task Force. To counter a troubling spike in gang-related crime, more than $763,000 will pay for six additional personnel within in the Sheriff’s Department, District Attorney’s Office and the Probation Department.

The Task Force will focus its efforts on gang suppression in areas known for gang violence. Member agencies will gather information on gang crimes, document gang members and develop intelligence necessary to successfully prosecute gang-related cases.

“Many residents live in fear as violence continues to take place in our communities,” said Supervisor Jacob. “The additional resources will mean more arrests, more prosecution and greater supervision. We are standing up to the thugs.”

Two sheriff’s detectives, two probation officers, a prosecutor and a district attorney investigator will be added to the roster of law enforcement officials already working to battle crime in East County.

The detectives and one probation officer will be assigned to the existing Sheriff’s Special Investigations Unit operating out of the Lemon Grove Station. The prosecutor and investigator will handle gang-related cases.

A second probation officer will be tasked with intensely supervising East County gang offenders not sentenced to state prison.

According to law enforcement officials, there were 13 gang-related homicides in East County communities in 2004. Spring Valley and Lemon Grove experienced a dramatic up tick in assaults and robberies, crime statistics show. East County school districts have reported a surge in gang activity on school campuses.

Jacob is a member of a community-based gang task force, which includes the Grossmont Union High School District, other East County school districts, the Sheriff’s Department, the Probation Department, the District Attorney’s Office, the City of La Mesa, and the City of El Cajon. The group meets regularly to devise ways keep gang activity off school campuses.