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Conducting Effective Witness Interviews  

December 1, 1996

The ultimate goal of a gang investiga­tion is to find the truth. What happened? Who did it? How? As law enforcement officers, how do we arrive at the truth? What is our part in the game plan? Here are some suggestions that may be useful for patrol personnel, detectives and fol­low-up investigators when dealing with witnesses and victims of gang crimes.

 

Nations at War Within Windy City Limits  

November 1, 1996

These Chicago-­based gangs follow strict dress codes and use body language as a nonverbal form of communication. A gang member can simply cross his arms to "announce" his gang affiliation.

Skinhead Groups Gain Youhful Following  

October 1, 1996

Skinhead membership has tradition­ally drawn from dysfunctional work­ing-class families, and it appears that many skinheads come from broken homes. Members can be as young as 13 and as old as 25. They typically pos­sess average intelligence, but are often poorly educated.

Tracing the Roots of Black Gang Rivalry  

August 1, 1996

The Crips and Bloods have now moved into their second generations, and traditions are being established within these gang families. The street gang lifestyle has become an accept­able way of living for some families.

Tags: Bloods, Crips

A New Gang Threat Rears its Ugly Head  

July 1, 1996

The Southeast Asian street gang is a fairly new threat on the gang battlefield. Their presence was first noted by law enforcement officials in Southern California in the late 1970s.

Careful Planning is Key to a Sound Investigation  

June 1, 1996

Getting the case to court and obtaining a favorable decision by the bench or jury is always the goal in a gang investigation. And one of the greatest assets to any case is, of course, the witnesses. How do you solicit cooperation and a commitment to testify in court from these unique wit­nesses?

A Back-to-Basics Approach to Gang Investigators  

May 1, 1996

You get dispatched to a possible gang shooting. When you arrive, the scene looks like it came straight out of' the movies. Family members are present and are hysterical. Several gang members are just milling around, and a lifeless body is on the sidewalk.

Decoding the Secret Messages on the Wall  

April 1, 1996

Obviously, not all graffiti is gang graf­fiti. But once you are able to decipher their source and secret mes­sages, graffiti becomes a useful source of information.

Easing Investigations on the Gang Battlefield  

March 1, 1996

Photos, jewelry, hairstyles and body piercing are among the obvious physical traits investigators look for when profil­ing gangs. But understanding how the members think, act and feel also can help police develop a rapport with members, and in turn, help expedite gang-related investigations.

Incriminating Signs of the Rat Packs  

February 1, 1996

When citizens hear the word "gang," they usually conjure up stereotypical images of Hispanic, Asian, black or white thugs roaming inner-city streets. But most cops working the gang detail understand that looks can be deceiving.

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