Federal Judge Halts Clearing Of Orange County Homeless Camp

Sheriff's deputies had planned to begin ticketing and arresting people who are camped along a flood control channel in Orange County, but a federal judge has issued an injunction, preventing Orange County from clearing out the homeless camp. The decision came late Tuesday night after lawyers for homeless people camped out along the Santa Ana riverbed in Anaheim requested an injunction. 

Orange County has attempted to clear the homeless who have camped along the Santa Ana River bike trail in recent months citing health and safety concerns. However, lawyer Brooke Weitzman says the people camped along the riverbed, don't have many options to move. 

"Without this order, there was a concern that all the people in the  riverbed would be at risk of getting arrested. 

Supervisor Todd Spitzer says deputies have been focusing on other crimes occurring around the camp. 

"We specifically have not been, to my knowledge, citing anybody just because of their status that they're homeless." 

He says the county will begin fighting the injunction at a hearing next week, "To make sure we protect the people of Orange County from the riverbed already becoming Orange County's Skid Row." 

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