Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Yakima- Sureno killed in drive-by

Associated Press - September 30, 2009 10:55 AM ET

YAKIMA, Wash. (AP) - Police say the 17-year-old killed Tuesday night in Yakima was a known gang member, and the drive-by shooting is being investigated as gang-related. [The victim was a Sureno known by the moniker "Slow 1."]

A witness told police a car pulled up along side the Yakima teen, Yobane Ortiz, and shots were fired.

Responding officers found him on a street corner with one bullet wound to the head and several to the torso. He was pronounced dead at Yakima Valley Memorial Hospital.

Sgt. Mike Costello told The Yakima Herald-Republic the victim was not armed. He had school work with him.

The shooting was the 15th homicide this year in Yakima County and the first since July 19.

Information from: Yakima Herald-Republic,

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Toppenish group says get tough on gangs

TOPPENISH, Wash. -- A group wanting to rid the city of gang violence called for drastic changes in laws dealing with such crime when it met with state lawmakers during a Tuesday night forum.

A crowd of more than 50 filed into the Toppenish High School performing arts hall, voicing concern about
gangs in this rural town of 9,140 people, where drive-by shootings occur at least twice a month.

City Council members, school officials, police and officials with the state Department of Social and Health Services also attended.

Having state lawmakers along with officials from various agencies attend shows the group, Community Safety Network, is gaining traction, said group leader Simon Sampson.

"It's coming together," he said. "We just need to keep getting people involved."

Gang violence last Sunday left a 20-year-old man injured in a drive-by shooting in the 500 block of East First Avenue. And last month, gang members fired a dozen shots into an upstairs apartment on F Street, striking a pregnant woman twice in the torso. Her injuries were not life-threatening and her unborn child was not struck.

In March, a drive-by shooting near where the railroad tracks intersect with Buena Way left two young men dead.

Police have documented more than 250 gang members in the city on the Yakama reservation, but many of them are from other areas.

Group members handed state Sen. Jim Honeyford, R-Sunnyside, and state Rep. Bruce Chandler, R-Granger, a list of proposed laws clamping down on gang violence.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Sunnyside- drive by nets four arrests

Sunnyside police arrested three juveniles and one adult in connection with a drive-by shooting on Sunday.

Police received a report of shots fired in the 500 block of Cemetery Road at 4:49 p.m. A short time later another report of shots fired came in at 6:39 p.m.

Sunnyside Detective Jeff Cunningham said while police were investigating the second shooting, the four suspects came walking by.

Police arrested 18-year-old Ariel Cruz, two male juveniles and one female juvenile. All are from Outlook.

Cunningham said police are requesting charges of seven counts of assault in the first degree and drive-by shooting. Both Cruz and a 17-year-old male are also being charged with possession of a firearm.