South San Francisco Leaders See Progress In Curbing Gang Activity

SOUTH SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS) – South San Francisco leaders are crediting law enforcement with making significant progress in curbing the city’s gang problem following a multi-agency gang sweep.

Thursday’s raids produced 13 arrests across the Bay Area. Three federal agents were shot and suffered non life-threatening injuries during one raid in Petaluma.

Many of those arrested are accused of belonging to the 500 Block-C Street Gang, the same group linked to a drive-by shooting in 2010 that killed three suspected rival gang members.

“We have a gang issue in South San Francisco,” acknowledged the city’s police chief, Michael Massoni. “I think that the operation will have a significant impact on that gang problem.”

It’s an effort that was expected to continue, said Massoni, who joined U.S. Attorney Melinda Haag and other state and local officials in South San Francisco Thursday for the announcement of the arrests.

“As the U.S. Attorney said,” Massoni continued, “we’re not done yet.”

Following the 2010 drive-by killings, South San Francisco city leaders approved a $400,000 anti-gang plan, that included hiring four more police officers to patrol the streets.

A recently formed neighborhood response team is also being credited with making a difference in stemming gang activity in South San Francisco.

“We have that trust, it’s there, and it’s beginning to build up so I think we’re on top of it, that’s about all I can say about that, we’re on top of it,” said Mayor Rich Garbarino.

KCBS’ Chris Filippi Reports:

(Copyright 2012 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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