This presentation was delivered by Dectective Bruce Ramos of the Galt Police Dept.
Gangs have been around for centuries, ie. the Mongols, Triads, and Yakuzi
The Hispanic gangs (Crips, Bloods, Surenos, Nortenos) started in the 1960's in the Calif. prison system
A gang is 3 or more persons in association with each other who have a common sign or symbol and turn toward violence.
The Mexican Mafia (La Eme) uses the 13th letter of the alphabet (M) and the color blue
To join the Mexican Mafia and become a member, one has to:
Take a blood oath. This is called "Blood in; Blood out". One has to spill blood to get in and there is no way out of the gang except by death.
The rivalry between Northern and Southern Calif. gangs can all be traced back to Hector Padilla's shoes being stolen from his prison cell.
This was the start of the "Nuestra Familia" gang, the Northern Calif. gang.
"Nuestra Familia" gang:
+ uses the number 14
+ wears red
+tatoo of a sombrero pierced by a bloody dagger
+they are in competition with the Mexican Mafia
+organized along military lines
+have strict standards of dress code and hygiene
+have a written constitution
+do not have a Blood in-Blood out oath
+provides protection of its members from the Mexican Mafia
Bakersfield is the dividing line for the Nortenos and Surenos.
Reasons Youth Join a Gang:
+Protection from gang members
+A sense of belonging, empowerment
+Video games desensitize to violence, ie. Grand Theft Auto
Gangs in Galt
Norteno set - Varrio Ghost Town (VGT)
Sureno sets - Varrio Krooks Town (VKT), West Side Galton (WSG), Mexican Side Locos(MSL)
There are about 128 local validated gang members in Galt.
The Playboy Surenos (PBS) are located in Lodi as is the South Central Lodi (SCL) Nortenos
Effects on Community
+Increased criminal activity- shootings, stabbings, vandalism
+ Graffiti costs $80- $100,000 a year to clean up (includes school sites)
+Lack of neighborly social interaction
Tagger graffiti is different from gang graffiti (taggers use rounded letters with shadowing and are more artistic).
The walls of the the community are the gangs' newspaper advertising coming fights, etc.
The Internet is rife with criminal activity:
Youtube.com - a major contributor to gang lifestyle
Girls in gangs are just as much involved- they carry dope, money or guns on their persons
What to look for in youth who may be joining a gang:
+change of friends
+problems with authority
+glamorizing gang lifestyle (Scarface posters)
+Video games-behavior modification
+gang graffiti on personal items
When calling the police about suspected gang activity, give as many details as you can. The police needs the help and support of the community to do their job!
Galt PD - 209.366.7000