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Criminal street gangs in New Jersey have become an issue of major concern for the citizens and law enforcement agents for many years. Due to the security threats caused by the various street gangs in different municipalities, attempts have been made to identify the scope of the problem and the distribution of the gangs by name and membership in various municipalities. Newark municipality in Essex County is one of the leading municipalities in terms of number of criminal gangs, homicides resulting from gang activities as well as the crime conflict score. This paper identifies and critically examines the number of criminal street gangs in found in Newark Municipality, the names of the gangs, general information of the most recruiting and problematic gang and the growth trends of the gangs in the municipality.
The information for this report was obtained from the New Jersey States Police Street Gang Survey which is narrowed to the names of gangs and their membership in Newark municipality. Using the Google search engine the search for the entry 'gangs in New Jersey' was done. This search was narrowed down to the New Jersey gang survey viewer which gave an overview of the all the municipalities an the county in which they lie, the number of gangs in the municipality and the number of gang related homicides reported if any. This online search was further narrowed to Newark municipality in Essex County which gives an overview of the number of gangs and t6ge names of the individual gangs, and the percentage prevalence compared to other municipalities, number of homicide cases reported from gang activities as compared to other municipalities with gang activities, the number of school incidents related to gang activity, the gangs causing most problems as well as the gang with majority recruitments. Further information on the specific gangs in Newark was obtained by narrowing the search on the names of the gang;
This study established that Newark municipality has 9 different gangs which make it worse than 98 % of all the other municipalities (Great American Hackathon, 2009). 15 cases of homicide associated with gang related activities were reported which makes it more serious than 93% of the municipalities where gang related violence was reported (Great American Hackathon, 2009). The crime conflict score indicated that Newark was worse than 96 % of all the municipalities which reported cases of gang activity though there was no case of schhool incidents involving gang activities (Great American Hackathon, 2009). The criminal street gangs found in Newark include; Bloods, Crips, Latin Kings, MS-13, Five Percenters, Neta, Hells Angels, Dominicans Don't Play and Others (Great American Hackathon, 2009). The bloods were found to be the most recruiting as well as the most problematic gang. According to Larence (2010), ten different sects of Bloods have been found in Newark, NJ. They have been found to fight among themselves though they occasionally gang up against the Crips (Larence, 2010). With an increasing involvement in drugs by the gangs, the membership in street gangs is increasing as various gangs try to establish their territories in order to carry out drug trafficking in the urban areas, sub urban areas as well as in rural areas of the states outside New Jersey (Larence, 2010).
Newark is one of the leading municipalities in terms of the number of street gangs as well as the number of gang related homicides. The Bloods gang which has ten different sects is both the most problematic and the most recruiting gang in Newark. Generally, membership to street gangs is on the rise due to involvement of the gang members in drug trafficking.