WICHITA FALLS, Tx (RNN Texoma) - The Wichita Falls City Attorney's Office and the Wichita County District Attorney's office jointly filed a civil injunction against the Hoova criminal street gang and over a dozen of its members or associates on May 29.
The Hoova injunction case follows six months of investigation by the police department, sheriff's office, DA's office and city attorney's office.
The Chief of police in Wichita Falls said the effort to add the latest gang injunction is because of what he calls a direct connection to an increase in violent crimes.
Chief Manuel Borrego said they believe Hoova gang members are linked to several robberies, shootings and drug arrest. The reason why they want to add 19 people they say are in that gang to the city's gang injunction list.
The city of Wichita Falls website shows there are already about 25 known members under a gang injunction.
He said to put additional people on it they have to create another gang injunction.
"You have to do a whole another civil suit," said Chief Borrego.
Then a hearing will take place. If the judge maintains it then they will go to the next phase and serve them with another document.
A final hearing will take place where the judge will rule if they are added to the gang injunction list or not.
In March we reported about a federal judge barring Los Angeles from enforcing nearly all its gang injunctions.
Following our story, a few people reached out saying how they feel these civil restraining orders keep their families from being together.
"Yes, it does disrupt some lives," Chief Borrego said. "Not being able to be together with a sibling or whatever, but that's a life choice they made and not one that we made for them."
He adds it is not easy to get a civil injunction in place.
"Or to get your name on there, there has to be a lot of criteria that are met," he said.
He said there has been a lot of reoccurring violent crimes they believe those who were recently served are associated with.
"I don't have any sympathy for them, we will enforce it to the fullest extent that we can," said Chief Borrego.
Once on the gang injunction list those believed gang members are on it for at least ten years.
The chief said this is a way to help those on it turn their lives around, but their number one goal is to protect their citizens and give his officers the tools they need to protect themselves.
Gang injunctions have been in place in Wichita Falls for almost 12 years.