WASHINGTON COUNTY, Ark. (KNWA/KFTA) — A Springdale man was arrested Monday after accusations that he was trying to get children to join a gang.
Rogelio Angel Ramirez, 28, was arrested on July 24 for soliciting or recruiting a minor to join or to remain a member of a criminal gang, organization or enterprise, which is a Class C felony.
An affidavit says that on May 31, a detective assigned to the FBI’s Northwest Arkansas Safe Streets Task Force was contacted by the Springdale Police Department to assist in an investigation regarding a Juvenile Detention Center employee communicating with known gang members in Savage Locos, a street gang, regarding juveniles within the detention center and the court system.
The Springdale Crime Suppression Unit had obtained a search warrant for Ramirez’s Instagram page related to the investigation regarding the JDC employee.
The Instagram messages between Ramirez and minors showed that he had been actively recruiting numerous juveniles into the gang from multiple schools across Northwest Arkansas.
Detectives identified at least 10 juveniles Ramirez had been recruiting, and that Ramirez is known to either be the leader of or hold a leadership position within Savage Locos.
Detectives say that Ramirez clearly made plans to meet the juveniles and have them recruit other juveniles at their schools.
Additionally, he reportedly made statements that reference the juveniles are in the gang until they die, and that they cannot leave it.
The affidavit says Ramirez advised the juveniles to beat up other children at school, “kill” their ankle monitors and to disobey their parents and the court system.
Ramirez is being held in Washington County on a $100,000 bond. He has been ordered to stay away from minors.
His next hearing is scheduled for Aug. 9.
Ramirez was also arrested in December 2022 and charged with possession of a handgun on school property and three counts of contributing to the delinquency of a minor.
He pleaded not guilty and his trial is scheduled for Sept. 5.