OGDEN — Two more men have filed motions to opt out from the Ogden Trece injunction restrictions, claiming they aren’t members of the city’s oldest street gang.
The near-two-year-old injunction, a first for Utah, bans Treces from associating in public and from being even in the vicinity of guns, drugs or alcohol in public. It also sets an 11 p.m. curfew for Trece members.
In following the formal opt-out provisions in the injunction, the two men have filed motions in 2nd District Court to have a judge remove them from the injunction.
Santiago Boney’s request is set for hearing Aug. 21, just scheduled this week, while Ruben Acosta’s is still pending.
They are the second and third gang members to seek to opt out, said Deputy Weber County Attorney Chris Allred, who reviews the requests.
The first was Leland McCubbin, whose removal from the list of about 300 names under the injunction was approved by 2nd District Judge Ernie Jones after an April hearing.
Allred questioned McCubbin on the stand during the half-hour hearing, then informed the judge that prosecutors had no objection to McCubbin’s request.
The injunction has been in effect since Jones signed it in September 2010.
Technically, it is still a preliminary injunction, although with no formal expiration date.
Jones presided over a civil trial of the injunction last month, the last hurdle before making the document permanent.
With Jones’ decision expected any day, Trece defense attorneys concede the judge will make the injunction permanent.
The legal debate would then move to the Utah Supreme Court, joined by the American Civil Liberties Union of Utah, which monitored the June trial.
Opponents claim myriad constitutional problems with the injunction approach, which is commonly used only in California.
In his opt-out motion, Boney writes he is no longer affiliated with Trece. He said he left the gang in 2002, which included taking a beating, or “getting jumped out,” the gang world’s version of opting out.
Boney is among the 11 original defendants named on the injunction, which leads Allred to doubt Boney left the gang 10 years ago.
“I would suggest that’s probably not accurate, but we’ll see what shakes out,” he said. “If he can establish he’s been outside that lifestyle, that’s OK as well.”
Being among the original defendants doesn’t mean Boney’s criminal record was more significant than most, Allred said. The initial defendants were selected for other reasons as well, he said, such as to provide a cross-section of gang members as to whether they were “enforcers” or involved in other areas such as drug distribution, or were members of cliques or families within the gang.
In his opt-out motion, Acosta says he was never a Trece and “has no family nor meaningful persons involved in such activity.”
Allred said his review of the opt-out requests will include background checks, things such as verifying employment, and consulting with the Ogden-Metro Gang Unit.
“We especially want current information so we can verify they haven’t been involved in any shenanigans,” he said. “Our hope is that more will come forward and successfully end their gang involvement.”
Another gang member served with the injunction, and his mother, called 2nd District Court in April about how to opt out.
Contacted by the court, Allred outlined the basic procedure, which was then relayed to them.
“They have yet to follow up on their contact with the court,” he said.