Monday, 28 July 2008

Trigga Mob last year engaged in "kind of a turf war" with Keep It Lit, which had migrated from Oakland.

The Hurst investigation lay dormant until Oct. 2, 2007, when a reputed Trigga Mob member, Robert Earl "L'il Rob" Grimes III, 25, was shot dead at 733 Dixieanne Ave., a long-standing drug-and-prostitution outpost, according to police. The two-story, three-building stucco complex with a weed patch for a courtyard has been dubbed by police and some residents as "the Compound."Investigators cracked down on the neighborhood after the Grimes homicide. Their probation and parole searches took them back to Hurst.With a promise of police protection, Hurst decided to cooperate. In November, the Sacramento County District Attorney's Office filed the conspiracy and attempted murder charges against Martin and Franklin.Deputy District Attorney Sean Laird, who is prosecuting the case, declined to comment because the trial is pending.Defense attorneys Keith Staten, who is representing Martin, and Frances Huey, who is representing Franklin, also declined to discuss the case. Relatives of Martin and Franklin who have attended the trial also turned down interview requests.
It was the testimony of Detective Robert Quinn of the Sacramento Police Department's gang suppression unit that described the spread and structure of subsets such as the Trigga Mob, whose operations allegedly range from murder to dope to robbery, and the relationships between them and some of the other groups.Quinn described the Trigga Mob as one of several subsets of the Del Paso Heights Bloods, one that sought to spread fear and respect through drug sales, robbery, assault and murder.
Quinn said the Trigga Mob last year engaged in "kind of a turf war" with Keep It Lit, which had migrated from Oakland. At issue: control of a couple of northside crack cocaine markets, most prominently, the five-block stretch of Dixieanne Avenue around the Compound, Quinn said."It's where Keep It Lit and Trigga Mob are fighting for control of narcotics sales," Quinn testified.A judge signed a preliminary injunction earlier this year to stop blatant drug, gang and prostitution activity at the Compound. Police reported 633 calls for service to the apartment complex from December 2005 to November, according to court papers.
Up the block, Erik and Gale Snyder, who have lived on Dixieanne Avenue for 11 years, say they're moving."Lot of prostitutes walking up and down the street," Gale Snyder said. "Lot of drug activity. Sometimes we hear gunshots. Sometimes they sound pretty close to the house."In his testimony, Quinn said that as the investigation into Grimes' death unfolded, "slowly, people were saying that Keep It Lit was responsible for that homicide."No arrests have been made. The case remains under investigation.
It is one of two killings on Dixieanne last year that remain unsolved. In the other, someone shot and killed Charles Thomas Robinson, 19, on April 2, 2007, as he was sitting in a car about three blocks up.Police say they need the public's help with both cases and are asking people interested in a $1,000 reward to call 443-HELP if they have any information.Robinson's relatives described him as an independent dope dealer and craps shooter who squabbled on occasion with the Trigga Mob over those issues and others, including love interests.His cousin, Albert Moore, 31, said he sees Trigga Mob and Keep It Lit, as well as the other subsets, as trying to make quick reputations, often at the point of a gun.Moore said he suffered a gunshot wound to his leg last year when somebody from a subset on his block took aim at "somebody who was Crip walking too hard in the middle of the street," and missed.
"He was doing the little dance of the Crips, doing a little dance, and some Bloods happened to pass by and they seen that and they didn't like what they saw," Moore said.Moore said the subsets have fractured so much that on his street near Grant High School, "You see people wearing every (gang) color you could imagine."
Professor Hernandez said the cell division lends credence to his theory that things are becoming so fractured that even the concept of turf is becoming "antiquated."
Rivalry and violence are not.
"Another thing about gangs is, you've got to have an enemy," Hernandez said. "You have guys who don't have anything going for them, and all of a sudden, they've got another gang to fight. Then they have a new purpose in life and they're on their way."


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