City council considers ‘gang-free zones’ for Lufkin ISD

The City of Lufkin could soon establish gang-free zones at the request of Lufkin ISD.
Published: Sep. 6, 2023 at 6:15 PM CDT
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LUFKIN, Texas (KTRE) - The City of Lufkin could soon establish gang-free zones at the request of Lufkin ISD.

“Gangs are not wanted within our schools. They’re not allowed within our school walls, and so we wanted to be clear about that there will be consequences if people are engaging in gang activity, not only within the building, but also several feet outside of the building,” Lufkin ISD Assistant Superintendent Daniel Spikes said.

Spikes said this conversation started when they saw an increase in violent behavior within the community.

“If we see that gang related activity is on the rise whether it be in Lufkin whether it be in the state, whether it be in the nation, then we have the responsibility to stay ahead of that,” he said.

Spikes said the gang-free zone would apply to all property owned and leased by Lufkin ISD.

“We are able to expand our boundaries, so to speak, 1,000 feet in all directions away from any of our facilities,” he said.

“It provides clarity to our community. It provides clarity to our kids. It provides clarity to our parents that this space is a gang-free space,” said Spikes.

If approved the ordinance would mean a person 17 years or older involved in gang activity in the gang-free zones can face increased punishments.

Spikes believes it’s the school’s district’s responsibility to help keep students away from gangs.

“We also want to encourage our youth, our young people, not to get involved in gang activities at an early age. We also want to talk to them even as they get older about this is not what you want,” he said.

The Lufkin City Council will discuss the proposed ordinance at their next scheduled meeting.