By Antonio R. Harvey | OBSERVER Staff Writer
The Sacramento Police Department was a part of a multi-agency investigation into the Sacramento-based criminal street gang Oak Park Bloods, which netted arrests and seizure of firearms, California Attorney General Rob Bonta announced earlier this month.
The Department of Justice (DOJ) believes the members of the gang are allegedly responsible for a series of violent crimes, including homicides, and were identified by the Sacramento Police Department (SPD) as a significant threat to the community.
“For families, nothing is more important than having the peace of mind to know that the neighborhood our children play in and the community where we live and work is safe,” Bonta stated. “Today’s operation is one step toward healing the Sacramento community from the ills of gun violence. Thank you to our partners at the local, state, and federal level for a successful collaboration.”
The arrests were the result of a joint investigation and subsequent operation by the SPD, the Sacramento County District Attorney, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, and the Division of Law Enforcement’s Special Operations Unit — a collaborative investigative effort between the California DOJ and the California Highway Patrol.
The investigation culminated when law enforcement agents executed 19 search warrants and 15 arrest warrants in Sacramento on Nov. 10. During the operation, law enforcement agents arrested 16 individuals, and seized and recovered 24 firearms, including six assault weapons, of which four were ghost guns.
The agents also seized the equipment used to manufacture the ghost guns. Ghost guns are unregulated firearms that any person, including minors and prohibited purchasers, can buy and build without a background check.
The guns are unserialized and untraceable firearms that can be bought online and assembled at home. They are often sold through “ghost gun kits.”
“Thanks to the hard work of SacPD detectives and officers, as well as our partner agencies, a large number of guns are now off the streets in the Sacramento region,” SPD Police Chief Daniel Hahn stated. “As violent crime has increased, the dedication of our officers is even more crucial to the safety of our community. We are grateful for their commitment to Sacramento.”
The members of the gang, DOJ says, have allegedly committed various crimes, including attempted murder, assault with a deadly weapon, conspiracy to commit robbery, human trafficking, and the sale and possession of illegal firearms.
Agents from the United States Drug Enforcement Administration, Federal Bureau of Investigation, California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation – Special Services Unit, and the Sacramento County Sheriff’s Office also contributed to the investigation.
Through collaboration, the Special Operations Unit provides statewide enforcement for combating violent career criminals, gangs, and organized crime groups, along with intrastate drug traffickers.