On February 15, 2011, Judge Robert Brotherton of the 30th District Court signed an order granting the final injunction against the last remaining defendant in the PLM Gang Injunction case. This final order was against Felix Sapata III.
Approximately three years ago, the City of WIchita Falls and WIchita County Criminal District Attorney's office initiated this gang injunction case against the Puro Lil' Maffia, or "PLM" criminal street gang and 21 of it's members and associates. This action against the PLM came after six months of intensive work building the injunction case with the cooperation of the City Attorney's office, the DIstrict Attorney's office, the Wichita County Sheriffs office and the Wichita Falls Police Department, with special efforts by the police departments Gang Task Force Division.
The PLM is an extremely dangerous and violent Criminal Street Gang. Members of this gang have been involved in drive-by shootings, assaults, graffiti and other gang related activities. This injunction is intended to assist law enforcement officials and protect the citizens of Wichita County from the effects of gang activity.
Maureen Shelton, the District Attorney, praised the team approach to fight gang violence.
"This injunction shows, yet again that we are working together to combat gang violence and the death and destruction that it brings to our community," Shelton said. "I really appreciate the teamwork by the City Attorney's office, the WFPD, the WCSO, and the District Attorney's office to join together to stop gang violence."
This gang injunction prohibits specified gang-related actions that the gang uses to increase it's power and intimidate innocent persons. These prohibited actions include traveling in a vehicle at night, occupying a motor vehicle with weapons or illegal drugs therein, threatening other persons, or possessing spray paint. The prohibitions are primarily applicable to the "PLM Safety Zone". This injunction is intended to disrupt PLM gang activity in the same manner as the previously issued Varrio Carnales or "VC" injunction. According to Kinley Hegglund, Senior Assistant CIty Attorney, "This injunction provides one last opportunity for the defendants to change their lives by ceasing their gang activities and associations."
"This injunction is an important tool for law enforcement to use to interdict gang violence," John Gillespie, First Assistant DIstrict Attorney, said. "Arrests for violation of the Safety Zone will lead to serious drug and weapon offenses as well. This will help make our city safer."
By joining forces and working together, the CIty of WIchita Falls, Wichita Falls Police Department, Wichita County Criminal District Attorney's office and the Wichita County Sheriffs office are sending a strong message to the community that we are devoted to combating the city's criminal street gangs. Each agency has done it's part to fight the war on crime and gangs in Wichita Falls.