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Classification of Local Gangs - Research Paper Example

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Classifications of Local Gangs Abstract Gangs are increasing to become a global epidemic, especially to impoverished people. They can be classified according to the regions where they live, what crimes they most likely commit, how many members they have, and even the lifespan of the gang…
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Download file to see previous pages Classifications of Local Gangs The word “gang” used to have a meaning that describes it as a spontaneous occurrence, and that its members undergo collective behavior in such a way that the group’s behavior best describes the group’s internal structure; however, due to the increase in the crimes committed by more than one person, the meaning of the word gang resulted into a negative word most associated with violence and crimes of different magnitudes (Kinnear, 2009). In comparison and contrast with the word “team,” both involve forming a union of people having similar ambitions with the same or complementing skills, as well as constant interaction between the members (Griffin & Moorhead, 2011). The contrasting element between the two words is based on what context each one is used. For example, teams are usually associated with sports. As for gangs, they are mostly perceived both by common people and the media mostly composed of young people who are delinquents, law-breakers but very highly-organized in committing crimes (Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, 2009). Apart from having negative connotations, gangs are also categorized according to where their territory is the lifespan of the group and their preferred criminal activity (Department of Public Security, 2007). The rise in members of gangs can be attributed to its members’ sense of need, doing things together with people who understand them, financial needs, or even simply as getting away from their parents (Kinnear, 2009). The rise is very alarming, most especially in places that are economic or business areas in cities or states. In an example, island countries such as the Virgin Islands have a sharp increase in gang activity which greatly affected businesses. However, it is still difficult to suppress gangs, mainly because of poverty in the neighborhoods. Furthermore, the youth have nothing to do, which pushes them to join gangs to keep them busy (Lambert, 2010). In order to minimize or ultimately remove criminal gang activity, the Anti Gang Committee of the Virgin Islands was formed (The Virgin Islands Anti-Gang Committee, 2012). Their mission is to prevent the increase of gang members and activities by making opportunities for younger people to put their skills into use. It is rather difficult to create a generic taxon of gangs due to the numerous influences in the creation of such groups (Department of Public Security, 2007). It is therefore easier to group gangs based on different criteria such as size of the gang, lifespan, their territories, and their activities. In terms of the number of members and lifespan, gangs may be classified as: no-traditional or non-traditional gangs, usually the longest and most extensive in organization as well as crimes; compressed gangs, usually around 50-100 members, loosely-organized; collective gangs, larger than compressed gangs, and considerably more organized; and specialty gang, those that only have a specific activity like burglary or drug-related acts (Hess, Orthmann, & Cho, 2010). Gangs that are sorted according to territories are: street gangs, operating in the street and highly-organized; prison gangs, originating within the penal system; outlaw motorcycle gangs (OMG’s), those that use their motorcycles in committing crimes; one-percenter OMG’ ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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