SOCIAL MEDIA COPS: Law Enforcement Uses Social Media to Find and Seize Illegal Guns

Screen Shot 2015-05-22 at 10.14.47 AMHopefully they’re not targeting law-abiding citizens.

Gang officers around the Valley are taking more illegal guns off the streets, and they say they’re finding them posted by criminals on social media.

“We’re looking for gang members posting things about guns or being involved in criminal activity,” said Sgt. Paul Cervantes, Fresno Police.

We’re not even half way through the year and gang officers say they’ve already recovered at least two thirds of what they took from criminals all of last year. And some of those they’re finding thanks to Facebook and Twitter.

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As an example, one handgun was taken from 26-year-old Adrian Santana. The multi-agency gang enforcement consortium says Santana posted this photo of the gun on Facebook with the caption “just picked this up today.” His prior domestic violence convictions prohibit Santana from owning a gun.

“So if you’re one of those individuals, i.e. a gang member or prohibited person, and you’re in possession of a firearm, be weary of the fact that folks like MAGEC are going to looking for you,” said Sgt. Cervantes.

Sgt. Paul Cervantes leads one of several MAGEC units. He says so far this year his unit has taken 77 illegal guns of the streets of Fresno. Last year that total was 124 — a number his team will likely shatter by December.

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