TULARE CO, California (KGPE) – According to the Tulare County Sheriff’s Office, an entire branch of a south valley gang was dismantled on Thursday after 25 people were arrested.
Sheriff Mike Boudreaux said these alleged gang members are responsible for drug sales, gun sales, robberies, and over 30 drive-by shooting including one from last September where an 8-year-old girl was shot in the arm.
“These violent gang members,” said Boudreaux. “They bring drugs into our communities and into our town. They are the cause of havoc and terror amongst the law-abiding people who live here.”
Swat vehicles, hundreds of officers, and police sirens lit up the streets of Tulare County on Thursday morning, as over two dozen suspected gang members were handcuffed and put behind bars.
“These criminals are poisoning the minds of our children,” said Boudreaux. “The violent gang members arrested face charges ranging from drug sales, gun sales, shooting, to conspiracy to commit robberies, home invasions and conspiracy to commit murder.”
Last September, an 8-year-old girl was shot in the hand on the 15300 block of Visalia Ave during a drive-by shooting. Boudreaux confident his office has the man responsible.
“Jorge Barajas is the suspect in the shooting of that little girl. He is custody today,” said Boudreaux.
Also confiscated: 18 guns, 4 assault rifles, 2 silencers, a grenade, over 150 lbs of marijuana, 12 lbs of methamphetamine, .5 lb of heroin, and 2 stolen vehicles.
“I want to say that we are not done,” said Boudreaux. “We know that there is more violence out there. That more street gangs exist. We will use our resources to come after them because we want our citizens safe.”
The suspect arrested face numerous state and federal charges.
The law enforcement agencies will continue to work together because they do believe some of the suspects are involved in unsolved homicides.