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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 149364 Find in a Library
Title: Gangs: A National Perspective
Journal: FBI Law Enforcement Bulletin  Volume:63  Issue:5  Dated:(May 1994)  Pages:1-6
Author(s): A C Brantley; A DiRosa
Date Published: 1994
Page Count: 6
Sponsoring Agency: National Institute of Justice/
Rockville, MD 20849
NCJRS Photocopy Services
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Sale Source: National Institute of Justice/
NCJRS paper reproduction
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NCJRS Photocopy Services
Box 6000
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United States of America
Document: PDF
Type: Survey
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: Gangs no longer operate exclusively in urban areas, such as Los Angeles; gangs of various sizes exist in both inner cities and rural areas, and law enforcement officials should be aware of the natural progression of gangs.
Abstract: Many gangs do not last long, while more successful gangs excel at extending their economic base and recruiting new members. Eventually, well-established gangs may resemble organized crime groups. Large and well-organized gangs generally change tactics as their criminal focus evolves. With respect to possible reasons for gang establishment, most researchers agree that youth join gangs to satisfy needs unfulfilled in other aspects of their lives. These basic needs include structure, nurturing, economic opportunity, and a sense of belonging. Even so, the desire to meet needs does not fully explain the atmosphere of crime and violence that modern gangs foster. Images of expressive brutality are found in comic books, video games, movies, music, and television. Gang members are often fascinated by firearms, and media messages convey a strong link between violence and sexual attraction. Gang membership is a family tradition in some areas, and gangs have increased their involvement in drug trafficking. The gang problem requires a coordinated response by law enforcement, school, and community agencies and an understanding of social factors that produce and sustain gangs. The Federal Bureau of Investigation's response to gangs is discussed. 17 endnotes
Main Term(s): Gangs
Index Term(s): Gang Prevention; Juvenile gang behavior patterns; Media violence; Police; Social conditions; Violence prevention
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