Gang members are murderers, robbers, auto thieves, and drug dealers and are even moving heavily into human trafficking and identity theft. There is also great competition among the gangs resulting in numerous assaults and murders. Not only are gangs violent with each other, they commit crimes against our citizens and against our law enforcement officers. Since I was first elected our office has effectively and aggressively prosecuted gangs and their members so that our county’s citizens may enjoy a safe and stable community in which to live and work.
Since the inception of the District Attorney’s Gang Unit in July 2005, we have secured 6,682 prison commitments for a total of 50,104 years + 297 life terms in state prison with 2 convicted gang members on Death Row.
Our welfare fraud unit criminally prosecutes individuals who commit fraud in order to get, expand, or keep public assistance benefits that they would not otherwise be entitled to receive. In the past year, after strengthening our ties with the Board of Supervisors, we have aggressively cracked down on welfare fraud in San Bernardino County.
In 2016, 220 cases were filed totaling $1,703,731.25 in recoverable value.
IN THE NEWS (CLICK ON THE FOLLOWING LINKS)
Human trafficking and commercial sexual exploitation have been a hidden plague on our county, state, and nation for many years. In 2013 it became clear that the District Attorney’s Office needed to focus efforts on more effectively investigating and criminally prosecuting these ruthless exploiters. As a result, we produced the above Emmy-nominated documentary that delves into the problem of sexual exploitation in the nation's largest county.
A year after the release of our film and the creation of the prosecution unit, we partnered with the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department to form a countywide Human Trafficking Task Force.
Our office is proud to have a part in yet another countywide task force: SANCATT—which stands for San Bernardino County Auto Theft Task Force. Be sure to check them out on Twitter using the hashtag #SANCATT.
Their mission is to investigate automobile theft to include motorcycles, boats, personal water craft, recreational vehicles, utility trailers, semi-trucks, off highway vehicles, and construction equipment. Another component of their work includes providing prevention programs such as VIN etching and community outreach to reduce vehicle theft (see above film).
In 2016, SANCATT conducted 705 investigations which resulted in the following:
The recovery of 550 vehicles and components
And uncovering and closing down 39 chop shops
Along with their success listed above, SANCATT assisted other local agencies in 996 other investigations that led to 160 additional arrests.
CRIMES AGAINST PEACE OFFICERS
Every hour of every day law enforcement officers in San Bernardino County put their personal safety at risk to protect our communities. In 2016, in our county alone, 3,427 peace officers were assaulted, injured, threatened, or interfered with in the performance of their duties. Of these crimes, over 600 were felonies involving physical violence against an officer, use of a weapon on an officer, or threats to kill or injure an officer.
As District Attorney I have a responsibility to change this culture in our criminal justice system and ensure that we are doing everything possible to deter, prosecute, and punish those who attack, threaten, or interfere with our law enforcement officers--which is why I created the Crimes Against Peace Officers (CAPO) Prosecution Unit.