Norteno and Surreno gangs raided in Salinas
SALINAS, CA (KGO) -- State, federal and local law enforcement agencies swept through Salinas early Thursday morning, raiding the homes of suspected gang members accused of terrorizing residents of the farming community.
Armed with more than 40 arrest warrants, Salinas police and state and federal agents conducted the raids in an attempt to decapitate the leadership of the notorious Norteno and Surreno gangs, which have been fighting each other for years. Those arrested were brought to the Salinas Rodeo Grounds to be processed.
"There are some serious shotcallers who caused a lot of devastation," state Attorney General Jerry Brown said.
More than 200 agents and police were involved in "Operation Knockout," a wide ranging investigation which began eight months ago.
Salinas has been active gang turf for decades. City officials say they have gone from turf wars to drug trafficking with links to Mexican cartels.
"Salinas is really the gateway city in the northern district of California for the importation of methamphetamine, heroin, cocaine," U.S. Attorney Joe Russoniello said.
Last year, there were 29 murders in the city, all of them, police say, were gang related.
This year, there has been one murder. About a month ago, a 6-year-old boy was playing inside his home when he was struck in the head by a stray bullet during a gang shooting at a nearby park. A police source tells ABC7 that tragic murder helped step up the efforts of law enforcement working on Operation Knockout.
Just two weeks ago, a 10-year-old girl was wounded by a stray bullet from a similar gang shooting. She was walking home with her mother when the drive-by shooting happened.
By the end of the day, 37 people had been arrested. Agents confiscated 40 pounds of cocaine, large amounts of marijuana and methamphetamine and a dozen firearms.
salinas, arnold schwarzenegger, jerry brown, crime, gang violence, california news, vic lee
- Teen stowaway remains hospitalized in Hawaii 13 min ago
- SFPD to crack down on violators for pedestrian safety 31 min ago
- Sex offender grabs girl from parents in Berkeley 18 min ago
- 3-alarm fire burns three homes in San Francisco
- Tri-Valley area could see higher drought rates 28 min ago
- Palo Alto hiker rescued in Yosemite after fall 30 min ago
- FedEx sued over deadly California bus crash
- Homicide suspected after body found in San Jose
- Measuring California's impact from affirmative action ban
- Classical music legend Art Barnes is retiring
- 7OYS explains how to get free car inspections
- Sharks beat Kings 4-3 in OT, take 3-0 series lead
- weather: Bay Area weather forecast for Wednesday
- roundup: Suspected San Jose homicide; Warriors Arena
Most Viewed StoriesMost Viewed Photos