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Old 04-03-2007, 10:20 AM
10 posts, read 35,541 times
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Everytime I read about crime in CA it's a lot of times in the same sentence as gangs. I currently live in Detroit and can't imagine the crime is worse in the LA area. I know it's got it's fair share but c'mon we're talking about Detroit here. For some reason we(Detroit) are a big city and have a lot of crime but I've never heard of gang issues. I've lived here for over 30yrs I think I would know. Our criminals are just criminals nothing special.

Do gangs in CA tend to not mess with the general public and stick to other gangs? Or will gangs target anything and everything(like in Detroit)? Are gangs mainly in LA or suburbs too?

Just curious. Maybe it's the temperate climate that allows everyone to hang outside and create a gang. Although I think NYC had gang issues... I dunno. Detroit must be such a slacker of a city our criminals can't even gang up.
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Old 04-03-2007, 10:29 AM
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California does have gangs and we have criminals too that are not in gangs. But yes we have gangs. Different gangs in different areas. Some spill out into the suburbs and most are in bigger cities. It just depends on ones location.
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Old 04-03-2007, 10:34 AM
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Gangs and gang culture are a part of life in any major CA city. You will find gangs in the suburbs and the cities. They can be huge, mature organizations or a bunch of 15-year old kids.

Generally speaking gang members tend to commit crimes against each other a lot more than they bother others. Most gangs focus on protecting 'territory' which is usually centered around their homes. Gang members tend to be young, live at home with one or more parents, have little or no access to transportation. So unless you live in an area where lots of gang members live, you probably won't notice it that much. In the areas with the worst gang problems, innocent civilians (including infant children) are often killed in the crossfire of gang activity.

Much of the complaining I see about "gangs" seems to be a bit of hysteria around Mexicans moving into formerly middle-class white areas in LA. I am guessing many of these people can't really differentiate a gang member.
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Old 04-03-2007, 10:39 AM
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Gang members come in all colors, but I won't lie-illegal immigration isn't helping. A lot of them come from Mexico. Start things with Blacks. Black start things with Latinos. Samoans, Whites, you name it..

What about MS 13, I'm assuming you have them in Detroit?
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Old 04-03-2007, 11:11 AM
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You will find people who claim gangs make LA the most dangerous place on earth, and people who will say "oh, it's not that bad." In truth, it's somewhere right in the middle. I would not look at the number of "gangs" but rather the overall crime rate as my deciding factor. It doesn't take a gang to mug you, kidnap your child or set fire to your home.

Here are some city crime rates from Wiki: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_..._by_Crime_Rate

The city of LA is ranked #28, but note that there are other cities that people would call "LA" (LA is huge), including Oakland. These are all broken out on the listing. Look all the way to the right--this is the actual rate (of homicides, anyway)--your chances of getting killed. I personally feel that's the biggie.

Don't rely on general comments about "gangs" as to whether or not you should feel safe. People over- and under-estimate on this site like crazy.
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Old 04-03-2007, 01:41 PM
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One finds some very naive generalizations from those who watch the gangs on the news. I suggest you check the Los Angeles threads for real, we live with them, observations.

For instance, Los Angeles has a multi-generational, highly entrenched gang culture that defies virtually every sentence in Sassberto, beloved moderator's post above. Gang members live together, with their own families, with spouses, their kids, alone, whatever. They own cars, but steal cars to do specific jobs and then dump them. They are guided solely by desire for violence, and to break laws.

I work with the local police for neighborhood watch, and they chart the trends for us city-wide. In the Valley, we're currently facing South Central gangs on hot prowl (they don't care if people are home) robberies here, who've realized they're a tad recognizable outside their own territory, and have roped in the local gangs to rent or steal cars for them for a cut. They've targeted nice, middle-class/working class areas because they perceive working people, buying stuff worth stealing and being gone during the day.

The L.A. gang problem is growing by leaps and bounds, 20% in L.A. proper, 40% in the S.F. Valley part of it, last year alone. You definitely will have vandalism, and you probably will have robberies on your block if you live here, except in the richest enclaves. L.A. is a vastly spread out metropolis, and to note that gangs indeed touch every part of it minus those richest enclaves is a very different observation than saying there's one bad part of town to avoid, as with most cities. It exists and grows in most places here, unless you never, ever, ever plan to set foot outside the West side of L.A.
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Old 04-03-2007, 01:55 PM
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Fastfilm has it right,
The gang problem got so bad in Oxnard (where I lived for 3.5 years) that they had to put in place a "gang injunction" against the multi-generational "Colonia Chiques" in June 2004. These gang members are not "kids". They murdered, rapped, beat up, stole, and terrorized the whole community for years. As I mentioned, they are multi-generational, where whole families are in the gang. Mothers, fathers, uncles, cousins and siblings. Generation after generation. This is by no means "child's play".

Last edited by Roma; 04-03-2007 at 02:48 PM.. Reason: correct something
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Old 04-03-2007, 02:27 PM
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What about the towns around Sylmar and Sylmar itself?

Are there HIGH gang related problems in this area as well?
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Old 04-03-2007, 02:46 PM
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AlaskaDreamer, I don't know anything about Sylmar. Hopefully someone on here can give you the information you need.
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Old 04-03-2007, 05:25 PM
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There are millions of people living here in a variety of cities and suburbs. I've lived in 6 different municipalities in Los Angeles county in the past 25 years - and never saw any gang stuff going on. Yes, there are pockets of problem areas. But the so-called "news" media follow the "if it bleeds, it leads" formula for top stories.

The police departments in Cali do a pretty good job keeping it under control. Gangs mainly mess with each other. If they started messing with the public at large you'd see immediate galvanization of the police to squelch it.
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