In the United States, gangs are responsible for approximately half of all violent crimes. Unfortunately, Georgians are not immune to this form of organized crime, and member recruitment is on the rise, with over 71,000 confirmed gang affiliates and over 1,500 suspected gang networks. The majority of these gangs are affiliated with a larger organization, which typically consists of several different gangs under one banner or leadership.
The Gang Enforcement Team at the Atlanta Police Department estimates that there are currently between 3,000 and 5,000 active gang members in Georgia. This number does not include members who may have been incarcerated for offenses such as drug trafficking or other criminal activities. In addition, it is estimated that another 10,000 people claim some type of affiliation with a gang, but may not necessarily be involved in criminal activity.
Gang violence has become a major problem in Georgia, with most victims being young African-American men. Although most victims can be either male or female, they tend to be male because they are more likely to be involved in criminal activity and therefore subject to becoming recruits. In addition, women often feel safer living in gang neighborhoods if they are able to protect themselves with weapons.
There are several factors that lead up to recruiting a person into a gang. Often, people who come into contact with gangs are those who want to escape an adverse life situation and need someone to help them get by.
According to law enforcement estimates, the Atlanta metropolitan region has 58 gangs with over 1,950 members. In and around Atlanta, the most common gangs are Hispanic and African American.
The presence of gangs is a concern in many parts of the country, but especially in large cities such as New York, Los Angeles, and Chicago where they can affect any community that doesn't take action against them. In Atlanta, several gangs including the Black Guerrilla Family, Crips, and Bloods have established themselves over time. They often claim public spaces within the city's borders and compete for territory. The violence typically involves claims and counter-claims between members of different gangs.
Gang involvement in crime includes drug trafficking, weapons violations, robberies, homicides, and acts of violence. One of the most notorious gangs in Atlanta is the Gangster Disciples. They are known for their use of guns, drugs, and terror tactics. They also have active chapters in several other states including Illinois, Maryland, and Oklahoma.
Crime statistics show that Atlanta has the third highest rate of gun violence in the nation after Detroit, Michigan, and Baltimore, Maryland. There have been over 800 shootings so far this year alone!
These gangs nearly always deliver numerous substances at the same time. For example, a gang might bring drugs for sale on the street corner, try to collect drug debts, protect their territories, and/or fight other gangs for customers.
In addition to Hispanics and African Americans, some Native Americans, Asian Americans, and whites also belong to gangs. Most Native American gangs are based on tribal affiliation rather than geography. Many Asian American gangs are based in cities where there are large populations of immigrant workers who need protection from foreign criminals.
Gang violence is a major problem in Atlanta. The majority of murders in Atlanta between 2004 and 2013 were done by members of gangs. The most dangerous neighborhoods in Atlanta for people not involved in gangs are Auburn Gresham, East Atlanta, and Grant Park. These areas have high rates of unemployment, drug activity, and crime overall. Some people believe that if you're not part of a gang, you can easily be killed in Atlanta today.
There are several ways you can avoid getting into a confrontation with a gang member. If you find yourself in a situation where you need to defend yourself, try to stay away from guns because they will only make things worse.