Fresno Police crackdown on gangs

FRESNO, Calif. Within minutes they surrounded a car, and later conducted a thorough search. The 19-year old driver was arrested for a suspected D.U.I. He happens to be a validated gang member on parole.

Police also questioned the 14-year-old passenger who was wearing an empty gun holster on his belt.

"We just had a homicide a couple of weeks ago in the same area, a couple of blocks from here and that why we're cracking down in this area to make sure they don't get out of hand and start shooting even more," said Fresno Police Officer John Banuelos.

Two weeks ago, Fresno Police Chief Jerry Dyer unveiled a new plan to crack down on gang violence after a series of shootings which led to three homicides in one weekend. Since then, police have made 648 arrests -- 216 of which are felonies. They have also confiscated 8 firearms.

Officers say the operation is working. "It's been a lot slower out on the streets because of the coverage of it all," said Banuelos.

But, people who live in and around violence-ridden areas aren't convinced.

Early Saturday morning, three people were shot at a house party in Southeast Fresno. And Sunday morning, a teenager was shot in a drive by shooting in Southwest Fresno as he was walking down the street with his friends.

Neighbor Christina Hernandez said, "You got a lot of people hanging around. Its shootings and drugs. It's a lot. But, it's where we live and we just deal with it, I mean, what can we do?"

When the operation started, Chief Dyer said it would continue for at least thirty days. Already two weeks in, no word yet on when it will end.

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