Browse » Home » Hanover Boyz , Laos Pride , MS-13 , Original Crip Gang , the Almighty Latin King Nation , Tiny Raskal Gang , Young Bloods » the Young Bloods, Hanover Boyz, MS-13, the Almighty Latin King Nation, Laos Pride, Tiny Raskal Gang, Original Crip Gang, Oriental Rascals, Providence
Saturday, 9 February 2008
the Young Bloods, Hanover Boyz, MS-13, the Almighty Latin King Nation, Laos Pride, Tiny Raskal Gang, Original Crip Gang, Oriental Rascals, Providence
Youths as young as 12 have been identified as members of the Young Bloods, Hanover Boyz, MS-13, the Almighty Latin King Nation, Laos Pride, Tiny Raskal Gang, Original Crip Gang, Oriental Rascals, Providence Street Boys, Dark Side Rascals, 18th Street Gang and the Asian Outlaw Boyz.
The Latin Kings are involved in drug trafficking, but most of the gang members are not in it for the money. They join for a sense of belonging and to protect themselves from other youths. They have little sense of history and often no idea why they fight, except to avenge slights, with rival gangs.
Police Maj. Stephen M. Campbell, who oversees the detective division, says that monitoring gang activity is a department priority.
“It’s a constant back and forth between warring gangs,” he says. “The potential for a violent outburst that could take multiple lives is always there.”
The police, with the help of two FBI agents and a state trooper assigned to the gang unit, have created a database identifying 1,400 gang members and their associates. Some of them live in Massachusetts or other Rhode Island cities such as Cranston, Woonsocket, Pawtucket, Central Falls and West Warwick. Nonetheless, they frequent Providence and have come across the radar of the police gang unit.
Last year, one in five shootings in the city was gang-related. The police recorded 14 murders and 59 instances in which people were shot, up from 47 in 2006. Gangs were responsible for 2 of last year’s murders, 12 shootings and dozens of drive-by shootings where shots were fired, but nobody was hit.
Last month, the new year began with a flurry of shootings between the Hanover Boyz and the Oriental Rascals. A 20-year-old woman was wounded, but nobody was killed. The vast majority of nonfatal shootings go unsolved because gang members refuse to file police complaints or cooperate with investigators. They prefer to take justice into their own hands.
Overall, the police identify a dozen gangs of significance in the city, about twice as many as when the gangs first arrived in the early ’90s. Wheeler says it was easier to track six large gangs with hundreds of members. Today, there is a proliferation of smaller gangs who are constantly feuding with each other.
The police say that in the past the older gang members, called OGs, kept the “juniors” or young gang members in check. That’s no longer the case. The OGs are less involved in the day-to-day workings of the gang, and the juniors have little respect or interest in the old days.
Gang initiation almost always requires a “jump in,” a beating administered by members of the gang who often line up in a gauntlet, striking and kicking the rookie gang member for anywhere from 10 to 90 seconds.
When someone leaves a gang, usually there’s a “jump out.” A gang member is beaten and must suffer bleeding or a broken bone to be set free.
Female gang members also are jumped in and, in some cases, they are “sexed in.” One female gang member had to roll dice and have sex with the same number of male gang members — 2 to 12 — that appeared on the dice. In another jump in, a former MS-13 gang member said that a group of gang members stood before her and she had to select 13 of them and have sex with them in succession.
Many of the gang members are brazen about their gang affiliation. They adorn their bodies with elaborate tattoos that announce their gang allegiance, and they boast about their toughness on Web sites such as MySpace.com.
Most of the violence is gang-on-gang disputes, but gang members also have been arrested for dealing cocaine, ecstasy and marijuana. They are regularly picked up on firearms charges and for armed home invasions.
The gang activity is not limited to the streets. Officials at the Adult Correctional Institutions keep close tabs on gang members who enter the prison system. Tracking them is good for the safety of the prisoners, as well as the safety of the guards. Right now, 250 of the state’s 3,500 male prisoners, 8 percent of the population, have been identified as gang members.