Drug Gangs on Catalina Island

Catalina, by Frank Horst

Originally uploaded by Thomas Roche

There’s an article on CNN about drug gangs on the island “paradise” of Catalina:

Deputies on the isle say a fledgling gang called the Brown Pride Locos has gotten a foothold among the beaches, coves and tourist shops.

A stabbing, burglaries and graffiti are being blamed on the gang, and deputies last month surprised teenagers practicing moves with knives on a dark bluff above Avalon’s crescent-shaped bay.

A swift crackdown has netted at least six arrests and led to a pair of police raids — but it has also caused an uproar in the tiny community, where residents leave their doors unlocked and putt around in golf carts.

Locals insist that LA’s corrupting influences could never penetrate their paradise, where the stars of Hollywood’s golden age frolicked and where dozens of classics, such as “Mutiny on the Bounty” and parts of “Jaws,” were filmed.

Deputy David Mertens, a six-year gang enforcement veteran from Los Angeles, is trying to gain the upper hand before the violence escalates.

“Before I transferred here, I came to do my interview and I was shocked,” said Mertens, who was brought in with a new commander late last year. “I could not believe all these gangsters walking around and all these drug deals going on right in the open.”

Read More Here.

Image from Wikipedia.


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