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Indictments target South L.A. street gang, apartment complex

October 18, 2012 |  1:14 pm

Approximate location of apartment complex shown in black.

Federal agents and local police arrested four members and associates of a South Los Angeles street gang Thursday, the same day city prosecutors filed a civil injunction to force changes at an apartment complex that has been a center of gang activity, authorities said.

Those arrested Thursday  -- all tied to the Denver Lane Blood gang -- were Rodney Longmire, 29, of Lynwood; Jermaine McClelland, 36, and Marcus Washington, 40, both of Los Angeles; and Darrell Sanford, 29, of Hawthorne.

They also were named in a series of federal grand jury indictments unsealed Thursday and included Sanford's brother Reginald, 35, of Compton; Damone Giles, 34, of Long Beach; Quincy Giles, 30, of Los Angeles, James Madison, 40, of Inglewood; and Luvvaughn Lovings McCoy, 35, of Los Angeles.

Two of those defendants were already in custody and two are fugitives, authorities said.

The indictments accuse the defendants of assorted drug and gang charges and are the result of a two-year investigation into the gang.

If convicted on all charges, each defendant could receive up to 40 years in federal prison.

Meanwhile, in a related action, the city attorney’s office said Thursday that it had filed a civil enforcement action that would impose court-ordered conditions against the owners of a two-story, 28-unit apartment building on the 800 block of West Imperial Highway known to be frequented by the Denver Lane Blood gang.

Prosecutors said the action was in response to ongoing gang crime at the location.

In arguing for the injunction the city attorney said that over the last five years there have been nearly two dozen arrests at the property for alleged drug sales, armed robberies, gang graffiti vandalism, gun possession and beatings of residents or visitors. 

Between June and September of this year, law enforcement agencies reported that investigators made half a dozen purchases of crack cocaine from multiple Denver Lane gang members and associates in and around the apartment complex.

If approved, the injunction would prohibit the owners from allowing gang members to sell drugs or commit other crimes at the property and force them to make mandatory improvements to the property.

Those fixes would include installation of a controlled entry gate, improved lighting, video surveillance, tenant screening procedures and extensive background checks, the hiring of licensed security guards, and prohibiting known gang members from accessing the property, the injunction request states.


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Map. Approximate location of apartment complex shown in black. Credit: Los Angeles Times Mapping L.A.