A gang is a group of recurrently associating individuals or close friends with identifiable leadership and internal organization, identifying with or claiming control over territory in a community, and engaging either individually or collectively in violent or other forms of illegal behavior. When a new member joins the gang he or she must go through an initiation, the most common initiation is “jumping in” or getting beaten by all the gang members and/or committing acts of theft or violence. In 2011 the National Gang Intelligence Center of the Federal Bureau of Investigation asserted that "There are approximately 1.4 million active street, prison, and outlaw gang members comprising more than 33,500 gangs in the United States." In this paper you will read about gang types and gang structure, why people join gangs, typical gang activities, gang violence, and how gang members identify themselves.
There are basically four types of gangs; Delinquent Youth Gangs, Traditionally Turf-Based Gangs, Gain-Oriented Gangs, and Violence/Hate Gangs. A Delinquent Youth Gang is a loosely structured group of young people that hang out together. The group has a name, and typically members have developed identifying signs such as similar clothing styles, colors, and/or hand signs. Members engage in delinquent or undesirable behavior with enough frequency to attract negative attention from Law Enforcement and/or school officials. A Traditionally Turf-Based Gang is a loosely structured, named group committed to defending its reputation and status as a gang. It is usually associated with a geographic territory, but may simply defend its perceived interests against rival gangs. Members are juveniles and/or adults who typically use identifying signs such as clothing style, colors, tattoos or hand signs. The members usually mark their turf with graffiti. A Gain-Oriented Gang is a loosely structured, named local group of juveniles and/or adults who repeatedly engage in criminal...
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