The San Leandro Police Department is on heightened alert due to an escalating pattern of threats and other suspicious activities directed towards the Department as a whole. According to the Bay Area News Group, one East Oakland gang is the main cause for concern.
On Thursday, Robert McManus, a lieutenant with the San Leandro police, said, “We do have to take these threats as credible threats, because we do know the history of this East Oakland gang. They are a violent, serious gang responsible for violent crime.”
McManus went on to say that the gang has issued threats that target “San Leandro police officers in general.”
Police believe that the escalation may be the gang’s response to an incident in December in which police officers shot and killed 27-year-old Guadalupe Manzo Ochoa after she allegedly rammed police vehicles and other parked cars while trying to avoid being pulled over for driving a stolen car. The chase and fatal shooting happened in an East Oakland cul-de-sac located in the 9800 block of Springfield Street.
San Leandro officers returning to the scene that same day were nearly run off the road by another car. According to NBC Bay Area, that same vehicle had been reported as stolen earlier in the day, and was later found abandoned by Oakland police officers.
Since that time, one San Leandro officer was driving home to Livermore in his personal vehicle when he noticed that he was being followed by a car containing four men that appeared to be dressed in a manner identifying them as East Oakland gang members.
At one point, the individuals got out of their car and began to approach the officer, who was not in uniform. When he confronted them, they ran back to their car and drove off. The officer attempted to pursue the car, but the four individuals were able to escape.
In another incident, an off-duty officer made a report that he was followed to his residence in San Ramon. This occurred just a few hours after a gang member from San Leandro allegedly fired a handgun in the parking lot of a bar where a DUI stop was being conducted by the California Highway Patrol.
It’s also possible that recent escalation could be due to the crackdown on gang violence which has been a focus for San Leandro police. Last week police were able to make 16 arrests of gang members from the 65th street gang and 69th street gang and are still on the lookout for 20 other members.
In two other separate instances, off-duty detectives were confronted by individuals who are subjects of an investigation they are currently conducting.