YAKIMA, Wash -- Despite being on the books for several months, Yakima's anti-gang ordinance has yet to be used once, or even enforced. Washington Attorney General Rob McKenna is reviewing the law, which was also passed in Sunnyside and Union Gap, to see if it violates the constitution.
According to police in both Union Gap and Yakima, their departments will not enforce the law until the Attorney General tells them its legal.
"It's definitely better to experience a little frustration in the delay," said Lt. Tom Foley of the Yakima Police Department, "than enforce the law, loose the case later and have to pay people for violation of their rights."
The law, originally passed in Sunnyside, makes it illegal to be in a gang, and punishes parents if their children are caught in a gang.
The City of Grandview passed a similar, yet different, anti-gang law Monday night. Instead of making it illegal to be in a gang, the new criminal code adds stiffer penalties to crimes committed by gang members.
The Attorney General's office says the review of the law typically takes about 90 days.