About Santa Barbara’s proposed gang injunction …

The city needs to be tough to keep crime from growing. 37% 149 votes
It's racist, plain and simple. 12% 48 votes
It's worked in other cities; it'll work here. 27% 109 votes
Total waste of time and money. 14% 59 votes
We don't have a gang problem; we have a police problem. 7% 31 votes
396 total votes


Independent Discussion Guidelines

Like gun control and the war on drugs this is just another feel-good panacea that will only give authorities more ways to control us. We don't dare ask ourselves WHY we have a growing gang problem, we just pass laws and pretend the problem will go away.

billclausen (anonymous profile)
February 20, 2014 at 3:53 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Playing Devils Advocate here, no one voted the Race Card yet, so there it is...

dou4now (anonymous profile)
February 20, 2014 at 4:57 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Has the city yet spent as much money per alleged gangster to be equal to paying for a full college education for each of them too?

John_Adams (anonymous profile)
February 20, 2014 at 8:25 a.m. (Suggest removal)

From a local article about the proposed gang injunction, dated 24 January:

"The government would be able to serve the injunction on people who are not part of this case now, then arrest them for violating its terms without any court hearing to determine whether they are a gang member or not, Bibring [ACLU] said."

This is similar to the federal NDAA provisions 1021 and 1022, now law, which allow for the indefinite detention of law-abiding citizens without due process or right to an attorney. (Incidentally, a coalition of groups from across the political spectrum — 99%ers, the California Libertarian Party, the Bill of Rights Defense Committee, the California Republican Liberty Caucus, ACLU, OathKeepers, and others — worked together to pass AB351, the California Liberty Preservation Act — introduced by Tim Donnelly [R] — which nullifies these federal provisions within California. More details can be found at this post on a Santa Barbara discussion group: .)

Regarding the third option of the poll, whether a gang injunction "works" or doesn't work is irrelevant, of course, in determining whether it is racist or unconstitutional.

The proposed gang injunction is racist and unconstitutional because it restricts the liberties of brown people (both criminal *and law-abiding*) but not non-brown people, even if they commit the same crimes as brown people who have been convicted.

US covert and overt criminal wars of aggression caused 20-30 million deaths of mostly yellow and brown human beings since World War II, in 37 countries that did not attack us and posed no threat to us [ ].

The crimes against yellow and brown people are coming home and oozing down from federal to local.

JohnTieber (anonymous profile)
February 20, 2014 at 8:58 a.m. (Suggest removal)

I'm sure most of the alleged gangsters would qualify for a free education under the DREAM Act. but that would require a desire to do something constructive.

SB2SB (anonymous profile)
February 20, 2014 at 8:59 a.m. (Suggest removal)

I went to "the city's" council meeting to speak about "the city's" long history of gang injunctions and how really effective they were. Unfortunately since it was President's Day Monday; Tuesday was declared Council's Day and no was allowed to make public comments.... Keeping 'the city", the city I suppose.

So why not put my "public comment" about the history gang injunctions here!

18th century Mexico won it's independence from the Spanish and assumed control of gang injunctions against the heathens who refused to abide by the Spaniard's strictest of inquisition principles..
!848 the Mexicans lose control to the United States. The following three years is the worst drought on record! (Records being as long as they could remember.)
The Mexicans who owned most of the land found themselves in economic peril and decided to sell to "Rich Yankees" so they could move back to Mexico.
The rich Yankee wasted no time in the creation of a booming city similar to others during the gold rush era.
They enacted injunctions against Chinaman, when claims were made regarding the distribution of opium. (While the white man was addicting thousands of the Chinamans in their homeland!)

...and here we find ourselves in another drought. Some speculate that the housing market might tank again. That could be why the news is reporting the Chinaman's unloading the massive debt we've accrued from imposing one injunction after another...

At the rate we're going, we all be living like heathen again before too long!

touristunfriendly (anonymous profile)
February 20, 2014 at 12:46 p.m. (Suggest removal)

JT - "The proposed gang injunction is racist and unconstitutional because it restricts the liberties of brown people (both criminal *and law-abiding*) but not non-brown people, even if they commit the same crimes as brown people who have been convicted."

That's a racist statement in and of itself. It makes the assumption that gang members that would be subject to this injuction are "brown people". Believe it or not, there are gang members of other races that this injuction would be applicable to.

Botany (anonymous profile)
February 20, 2014 at 3:26 p.m. (Suggest removal)


Good point, and thanks for the correction.

My understanding [*** see bottom] is that, like stop and frisk in New York City, while it may initially target exclusively or mostly non-white people, just about anyone can be classified as a gang member.

I've seen reported, but have not confirmed, that the California legal definition of a criminal gang is simply "three or more people engaged in criminal activity."

Does anyone reading this engage in any activity with two others that some authority might *construe* as "illegal"? Are you sure?:

'The Over-Policing of America'


*** My understanding: In following most of the local reports on this, I've noticed no reference to an actual draft text, which at this point I'd much prefer to more news reports that lack specifics. I can research this myself, of course, but if anyone reading this happens to know of a source of something in writing that is definitive of what this thing potentially can do and how it can do it, I'd appreciate being directed to that.

JohnTieber (anonymous profile)
February 20, 2014 at 5:47 p.m. (Suggest removal)

More than half of the people on the list are already locked up!! Some for a long time, so what's the use??Some of the others already have moved on from that lifestyle. Just a ploy to make the city look like they're doing something!!!
BIG waste of time and money!!!!!

anon84 (anonymous profile)
February 21, 2014 at 8:02 a.m. (Suggest removal)

I've done some additional research since my previous comment, and this thing seems quite gnarly to me, to the point where I can't imagine how it could survive a competent constitutional challenge. Other injunctions elsewhere have, of course, but my understanding is that this one has some key differences, among which is the very broad geographical scope.

Excerpts are from…

'Judge Denies Preliminary Gang Injunction'
Mission & State
10 February 2014

…though my comments are based on information from eight additional articles as well.

(Excerpts from the article are within quotes; the rest is mine.)

"Attorney Tara Haaland-Ford: 'If she [Judge Sterne] was to find it against the Eastside and the Westside [gangs], they could serve every person they believe is Eastside or Westside—juvenile, adult, it doesn’t matter,” said Haaland-Ford, adding that there is not an opt-out clause in the preliminary injunction.

“ 'It wouldn’t be the tool they want it to be if it was just for these 30 people [named]. Half of those people are in prison and [others] are never getting out…' "
"…the proposed injunction raises issues of due process, an individual’s ability to contest being enjoined, the process for opting out of the injunction…"

Does this remind anyone of secret federal lists, such as the no-fly list and DHS "suspected terrorist" lists?
"…the use of juvenile records in making the case against named individuals…"

So does it, in fact, even target juveniles, as claimed, or just legally or illegally use juvenile records as a pre-crime tool?
"The U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals recently ruled that a City of Orange gang injunction violated the Constitution, saying that its scope was extraordinarily broad, encroached on the plaintiffs’ civil liberties and failed to give individuals named in the injunction the opportunity to contest allegations of gang membership."

My understanding from another source (but which I haven't confirmed) is that Santa Barbara's geographical scope is even broader, essentially forcing people (who have been accused of no crime, much less convicted) not just from their homes, but from entire neighborhoods.


JohnTieber (anonymous profile)
February 21, 2014 at 8:19 a.m. (Suggest removal)


"…gang-related Part 1 crimes (aggravated assault, forcible rape, murder, robbery, arson, burglary, larceny theft and motor vehicle theft)…increased from 52 in 2012 to 70 in 2013, but decreased from 23 in November to nine in December. The most common charge was graffiti vandalism—eight in November and four in December."

There's seems to be a discrepancy above that might be nice to clear up: there's no ellipses within the parentheses, which indicates the list of Part 1 crimes is complete; yet it then discusses graffiti vandalism apparently as a Part 1 crime.

Regardless, total Part 1 gang-related crimes in 2013 were 70 (i.e. 1.3 per week); December's total was only 39% of November's; it might be worthwhile to compare:

(1) January of 2014 gang-related Part 1 total, in order to determine whether December of 2013 was a remarkable (positive) outlier (holiday season?) or not, and

(2) total per week 2013 NON-gang related Part 1 crimes compared to 1.3 per week gang-related

— though some are charging that Chief Sanchez is manipulating the statistics which, if true, obviously would make any statistical analysis worthless.

I'm going with this, at least for now:

“This is a completely unreasonable, poorly drafted injunction,” said Santa Barbara lawyer Neil Levinson…“It’s wasting a lot of money and not really getting to the root of the cause."

JohnTieber (anonymous profile)
February 21, 2014 at 8:19 a.m. (Suggest removal)

JohnTieber - here's a copy of the civil complaint known as the gang injunction.

sbs124 (anonymous profile)
February 21, 2014 at 1:26 p.m. (Suggest removal)

The poll is set up in a highly biased manner. The first "pro" response addresses the more general issue of crime without relating the answer to the gang injunction. Someone might agree but think that a gang injunction is counterproductive. The second "pro" response embeds as factual an assertion that many would reject (that injunctions "work" elsewhere). But there is no clarity to the term "work." Even if someone believes that injunctions "work" elsewhere, the person may be opposed on constitutional grounds.
The negative responses on the other hand represent specific emotional responses to the injunction: they're racist, a waste of money, there is no gang problem. There are many, many other reasons to oppose an injunction.
The poll is set up to elicit what may be claimed to be pro-injunction responses.

CriticalObserver (anonymous profile)
February 22, 2014 at 7:07 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Yep, typical of an Indy poll to try to lead the answers.

JohnLocke (anonymous profile)
February 23, 2014 at 9:47 a.m. (Suggest removal)

If half the people listed right now are already locked up, it proves it is already heading in the right direction. This is a list of bad people. Stay away from them.

foofighter (anonymous profile)
February 23, 2014 at 10:08 a.m. (Suggest removal)

If half the people listed are already locked up then that proves that current gang supression methods are working and there is no reason to spend millions on a useless gang injunction. Foo I thought you were a fiscal conservative.

Herschel_Greenspan (anonymous profile)
February 23, 2014 at 11:26 a.m. (Suggest removal)

No one is spending millions on the gang injunction. That claim was long ago debunked.

We are however spending millions after the fact putting the bangers in jail and mopping up the messes they leave behind. Any money or staff time spent on the gang injunction so far has been well invested for everyone's benefit, including the people on the list. Just call off the "community organizing" protestors and the whole exercise will be a lot cheaper.

Don't come crying here about the expenses.

foofighter (anonymous profile)
February 23, 2014 at 5:15 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Foo, The gang injunction has already cost much more than the city has admitted. The lame excuse that you bought into was that the city staff time does not count because " they would have been doing something else." No business in the private sector would fail to bill staff time to a project. So of this injunction is granted, do you count the SBPD's time spent on patrol looking for gangsters wearing Dallas Cowboys hats? How about the court and jail costs? For a fiscal conservative you really have no clue as to what things really cost.

Herschel_Greenspan (anonymous profile)
February 23, 2014 at 5:41 p.m. (Suggest removal)

I watched how the gang injunction protestors did their math. No sale, sorry, This is a dead issue. You also need to set off any costs you claim against what the status quo costs us as well, and that means putting a price on the tangibles and the intangibles. Easily $500K in LE and court costs even before you put these jerks behind bars at $46,000 a year each.

The life a gang injunction saves will be the gang members themselves. No price is too high to get rid of this scum once and for all. Time to send a new message other than making enabling excuses and lose one more generation to this hormonally charged, low impulse control stupidity.

foofighter (anonymous profile)
February 23, 2014 at 5:51 p.m. (Suggest removal)

We already have laws against murder, mayhem, robbery, assault, and all other forms of violent anti-social behavior. This is no different from "hate crimes" laws, or "enhanced penalties" if you kill a cop. (As I suppose, killing someone whose life is of less value)

The laws against the behavior we despise are already on the books: Enforce them.

billclausen (anonymous profile)
February 23, 2014 at 6 p.m. (Suggest removal)

The laws you talk about go into force only after the crime. Their value as deterrence is obviously insufficient. Hence the use of a gang injunction, which is both proven and validated by the courts to be a viable crime prevention tool in contrast to the current batch of after-the-fact punishment tools.

foofighter (anonymous profile)
February 23, 2014 at 6:10 p.m. (Suggest removal)

So Foo in your world time is not money. Bizzare. So you must be using generally unacceptable rules of accounting. So enforcement and prosecution are also cost free. Wait you said,"no price is too high to get rid of this scum once and for all." That blank check is very fiscally liberal. What makes you think that this fig leaf injunction will "get rid of the scum once and for all?" New gangs and gangsters ate created all the time. Use basic logic, the injunction is a useless feel good political stunt which will do very little to solve the problem at a high cost. The juice is not worth the squeeze Foo.

Herschel_Greenspan (anonymous profile)
February 23, 2014 at 6:13 p.m. (Suggest removal)

It's an election year. Based on comments posted here and elsewhere, there are a whole lot of voters who share foo's psychotic delusion solution to gangs (whose members are brown, in spite of Extensive Media Coverage of an Afro-American gang member's court cases in recent months), they're not allowed to be in Santa Barbara, we won't tolerate them, I pay too much property tax to have to look at graffiti....
The "Just Make It Go Away" solution only has one variable - gang presence,
The cost of litigation against the city, now that OC's case established that Santa Barbara's injunction, more vague, covering a greater area, and already demonstrated to include people who have nothing to do with any gang, doesn't have much chance to be judged constitutional, doesn't matter. The costs of enforcing the injunction, jail and court costs, etc, don't matter.
A gang injunction is a good way to solve the gang presence problem; lock up everyone listed in the injunction. It's not a good solution to the "homeless visibility" problem, either.

14noscams (anonymous profile)
February 23, 2014 at 8:57 p.m. (Suggest removal)

I think the gang injunction needs to be run on a points system rather than someones subjective review of their record. As noted if half of the dream team is already in the pokey. Get caught with a weapon, one point, punch someone, one point, rob some one, get a point, drugs get a point.....etc...3 points and you make the DREAM TEAM! That way this racist crap would never be a valid argument. You do something stupid, just like my car insurance, you pay. So, I am sure this will bug a few people, there may be even MORE than 30 people on the list at at time. And just like the DMV works, how about just the mere fact that you have a court appearance you get a POINT! Either way, I would like to see Sterne get off her.......and move this things forward.

bimboteskie (anonymous profile)
February 25, 2014 at 11:13 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Pass the injunction and see the hypocrisy of Lompoc's Gang Injunction come to Santa Barbara. Lompoc's Hispanic youth and adults were often violated under the Injunction for wearing "gang attire" which included anything with "805" or "Westside" printed upon it. However, it is perfectly acceptable for the Wine Industry to print "Westside" all over the town on their directional signs. Even the Chief of Police can be seen wearing an "805" tee shirt supporting the local brewery who sponsored a local bicycle race. BUT, heaven forbid if any Hispanic youth wear similar clothing. I challenge anyone of you to call the Lompoc Police Department and ask the question "how many people have successfully been removed from the injunction"? The answer: not one! The injunction will strip some in the community of basic civil rights. The judge in the Lompoc Injunction warned that the Police would need to use much discretion in enforcement. Focus on the few that are the real problem, not throw a net that covered almost half the City like Lompoc. Ask the kids who became "gang affiliates" because they were not aware that their friend was on the "list" when the police stopped them from walking home from school. The injunction certainly will keep the problem from plain sight but only hide the problem indoors. It is a very successful tool to control , but it does not solve the gang problem. Just ask the people in Lompoc that live in the areas of the gang injunction. The key is intervention and not an injunction!

SalvaVeritate (anonymous profile)
February 26, 2014 at 2:38 p.m. (Suggest removal)

" Ask the kids who became "gang affiliates" because they were not aware that their friend was on the "list" when the police stopped them from walking home from school. " -SalvaVeritate

As I've said before, I should have every right to associate with gang members as long I do not engage in criminal activity - however - selling drugs should not be a crime and I should have every right to associate with and purchase drugs from gang members. The gang injunction puts my rights and many other non-gang members rights in jeopardy due to guilt by association.

Since I'm white, I'll never be put on the gang injunction, but you have to admit that is a pretty racist policy.

loonpt (anonymous profile)
February 26, 2014 at 2:46 p.m. (Suggest removal)

SalvaVeritat: As you probably know, the wine industry is sacred and the powers-that-be wouldn't dare do anything to offend them. Drunk drivers kill a lot more people than gang members do, but the rich folks benifitting from this industry don't concern themselves with such things.

Loonpt: Do you think it's racism, or just another gateway measure to control people, a al The Patriot Act, the Drug War, and gun control laws?

billclausen (anonymous profile)
February 26, 2014 at 2:54 p.m. (Suggest removal)

So many people in Lompoc were shocked when FARR, WOLF and CARBAJAL denied a Conditional Use permit to a local businessman who used his land to provide soccer and paintball fields for Lompoc youth. The land was adjacent to an existing City Of Lompoc park but partially abutted a small portion of farm land. SO MANY HISPANIC YOUTH STAYED OFF THE STREETS to play soccer on the weekends. Entire families gathered as a COMMUNITY and enjoyed healthy and safe fun. IF YOU WANT TO DETER YOUTH FROM CRIME GIVE THEM AN ALTERNATIVES. PLEASE DO NOT LET YOUR REPRESENTATIVES take positive resources from the youth and then scratch their heads when social problems erupt. People with financial means keep their children in many activities, but people "who wash your cars, cut your gardens, clean your houses", can not afford to do so. So, make certain you offer their children some type of alternatives. Then maybe you will not have a "gang" problem.

SalvaVeritate (anonymous profile)
February 26, 2014 at 2:55 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Salva Verde - cute, celebrating the patron saint of the drug trade.

If you want to deter kids from crime, lock 'em up as soon as they make stupid choices. There are PLENTY of alternatives. Stop making excuses for criminal life choices.

Get over this class warfare nonsense .."people who wash your cars, cut your gardens, clean your houses"…… That is insulting when you accuse these hard working people who do these jobs by choice, of raising gang banger kids.

There is a gang problem in this town because of hormonally over-charged young males and their criminal peer pressure. The only alternative is Depo-Provera shots. The only prevention is a gang injunction to isolate the worst of the worst from infecting the rest of the community.

foofighter (anonymous profile)
February 26, 2014 at 3:14 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Thanks SalvaVeritate for letting us know about the soccer field, that is really tragic. It saddens me that even our local government officials can be so heartless like that sometimes.

And bill I think it is both. Along racial lines you have this huge divide and conquer strategy going on between whites and various minority groups that is constructed primarily by the media and talk show hosts.

Then you have the entire notion of putting people on lists and tracking their whereabouts and limiting their rights based on their associations and alleged "criminal" activity, that definitely ties into everyone's civil liberties.

loonpt (anonymous profile)
February 26, 2014 at 3:25 p.m. (Suggest removal)

"If you want to deter kids from crime, lock 'em up as soon as they make stupid choices." -foo

Right, as soon as a kid puts on a bandana and steals a candy bar put them somewhere with some guys who help run the drug cartels and get them an education in how to commit bigger crimes AND get away with it. That's a great idea.

loonpt (anonymous profile)
February 26, 2014 at 3:29 p.m. (Suggest removal)

salva, there is no shortage of activities for young people in this town. NONE. wander into the Y anytime or any of the soccer football or baseball fields...there are sports everywhere.

without an injunction you don't break the cycle. only by breaking the the cycle can you give those coming up a chance to get away.

insisting on the same old same old gets you jack.

lawdy (anonymous profile)
February 26, 2014 at 3:37 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Ever heard of the juvenile justice system and Los Prietos Boys Camp, loonpt?

Though putting the fear of God in them facing Bubba behind bars should work too. Somehow we are not getting the point across, so keep getting the message out: Behind bars is not going to be cool.

foofighter (anonymous profile)
February 26, 2014 at 3:45 p.m. (Suggest removal)

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