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Lodi Police Department
215 W. Elm Street
Lodi, CA 95240
Phone:(209) 333-6727
Fax: (209)333-6792
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Gangs

What is a gang?

Criminal street gangs consist of three or more people, with a common name, sign, or symbol that form an allegiance for a common purpose and engage in specific criminal activity as defined in the penal code.  Many street gangs are formed according to ethnic or racial lines.  For example; Hispanic (Norteno, Sureno), Black (Bloods, Crips), or White (white supremacists, white pride, etc.).

How do gangs function?

Fear and respect are synonymous in the gang culture.  Gang members demand respect by attempting to intimidate rival gang members as well as the public.  Gang members also work in conjunction with each other to commit crimes such as drug sales, car thefts, burglaries, and assaults.  These crimes benefit the gang as a whole by generating money and establishing their reputation.

Some factors contributing to gang affiliation:

*          Ineffective parenting                 
*          Evidence of parental abuse or neglect
*          Experimentation with drugs or alcohol  
*          Associates with others with similar social or personal problems
*          Poor academic achievement and early anti-social behavior
*          Display of low self-esteem
*          History of family gang involvement

Some signs of gang involvement: (some things to look for, does not guarantee gang involvement)

  • Change in behavior
  • Drug or alcohol use
  • Decline in grades
  • Change of friends
  • Truancy
  • Staying out late, running away from home
  • Having large sums of money or new expensive items
  • Gang graffiti in their bedroom or on their school work
  • Change in clothing (wearing specific colors like red or blue)
  • Using hand signals to communicate with friends
  • Having photos showing gang names, slogans, or activities
  • New gang tattoos
  • Admission of gang involvement

Steps to discourage gang activity:

  • Prevent your child from associating with known or suspected gang members
  • Know your child’s friends
  • Supervise your child’s free time
  • Develop and maintain good communication with your child
  • Spend time with your child
  • Do not allow your child to wear gang-style clothing or colors
  • Do not allow your child to write gang names or slogans
  • Lear about local gang activity
  • Teach your child respect for others
  • Be and informed and involved parent

Resources:

  • Lodi area Crimestoppers
  • G.R.E.A.T.
  • School Resource Officers  209-333-6732
  • Special Investigations Unit  209-333-6732
  • The Federal Gang Violence Act
  • San Joaquin County Probation
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