FAQ - Gangs

Gangs

Q.
What are some signs that my child may be involved in a gang?

A. Change in life long friends
Change in style of clothing
Negative contact with people or authority
Being secretive from family and friends
Lack of interest in family/sports/community activities
Fear of going to school or lack of interest in getting an education
Drug or alcohol use
Poor school performance

Q.
What if my child is the victim of gang intimidation?

A. Notify your local law enforcement agency or the Washington County Sherriff’s Office Interagency Gang Enforcement Team, or the Washington County Juvenile Department.

Important Numbers:

Non-emergency Line: 503-629-0111

Interagency Gang Enforcement Team: 503-846-2700

Washington County Juvenile Department: 503-846-8861

Q.
What should I do if I think my child is in a gang or about to join a gang?

A. Notify your local law enforcement agency or the Washington County Sherriff’s Office Interagency Gang Enforcement Team, or the Washington County Juvenile Department.

Important Numbers:

Non-emergency Line: 503-629-0111

Interagency Gang Enforcement Team: 503-846-2700

Washington County Juvenile Department: 503-846-8861

Q.
Why do kids join a gang?

A. Identity or recognition- Being part of a gang allows members to achieve a level of status they feel they cannot achieve outside the gang’s culture.
Protection- Kids join the gang because they live in a gang area and are subject to violence by rival gangs. Kids join in an attempt to obtain safety from this violence.
Fellowship and Brotherhood-The gang functions as an extension of, or substitute for the family and may provide companionship lacking in the home environment.
Intimidation- Some members may be forced into joining by peer groups. Intimidation techniques range from extorting lunch money to physical assault.

Graffiti

Q.
What is graffiti?

A. It is one possible indication of gang activity in your area. Through graffiti, gangs are giving notice of their presence and activity. Graffiti is how gangs communicate and tell others that the area is visited by a particular gang.

Q.
What should I do if I see graffiti?

A. Notify your local law enforcement agency so that they can take a report and photograph the graffiti. This enables law enforcement to monitor gang graffiti.