As the American Revolution ended inthe first American gangs emerged on the East Coast, primarily in the form of youth fighting over local turf. More serious gangs plagued the streets of New York City beginning around as a wave of European immigrants struggled to establish themselves amid the crowded slums of the Lower East Side.
They may be seeking protection from rival gangs or violent crime in general, especially when the police are distrusted or ineffective.
Many are attracted to a sense of family, identityor belonging. Other motivations include social statusintimidation by gang members, pressure from friends, family traditionand the excitement of risk-taking.
Studies aimed at preventing youth involvement in gangs have identified additional " risk factors " that increase one's likelihood of joining a gang.
Victims of violent crime as well as their friends and family and members of socially marginalized groups e. Academic problems such as frustration due to low performance, low expectations, poor personal relationships with teachers, and the presence of learning disabilities are all risk factors.
Additionally, hyperactivity, low self-esteemand lack of role models can contribute as well. Involvement in non-gang illegal activity especially violent crime or drug use and a lack of youth jobs also increase a person's likelihood of becoming a gang member.
Gang membership is also associated with early sexual activity and illegal gun ownership. If a child has thought about or already joined a gang, support groups can help the parents with the next steps. The availability of sports or interest groups is said to reduce the interest in associating with delinquent individuals  When youth join in other social groups, such as a church group or study group, it increases the strength of their social bonds, which when broken or weakened is a cause for delinquent participation.
Prison gangs in the United States American prison gangs, like most street gangs, are formed for protection against other gangs. For many members, reaching prison gang status shows the ultimate commitment to the gang.
Many prison gangs are racially oriented. Gang umbrella organizations like the Folk Nation and People Nation have originated in prisons. On July 28,after a six-year federal investigation, four leaders of the gang were convicted of racketeeringmurderand conspiracy charges. Working collaboratively, the gangs engage in drug trafficking, identity theft, and other white collar crime using contacts in the banking system.
Motorcycle gangs[ edit ] The United States has a significant population of motorcycle gangs, which are groups that use motorcycle clubs as organizational structures for conducting criminal activity. Organized crime Organized criminal groups are a subtype of gang with a hierarchical leadership structure and in which individuals commit crime for personal gain.
The activities of organized criminal groups are highly varied, and include drug, weapons, and human trafficking including prostitution and kidnappingart theftmurder including contract killings and assassinationscopyright infringementcounterfeiting, identity theft, money launderingextortionillegal gambling, and terrorism.
The complexity and seriousness of the crimes committed by global crime groups pose a threat not only to law enforcement but to democracy and legitimate economic development as well. Some of the most notorious and dangerous gangs have evolved from youth gangs.
During the late s and early s an increase in violence in the United States took place and this was due primarily to an increase in violent acts committed by people under the age of iii Addressing Community Gang Problems: A Practical Guide Foreword Urban street-gang involvement in drug trafficking and violent crime is be-coming increasingly widespread—not just in large cities, but in suburban.
America Doesn't Have a Gun Problem, It Has a Gang Problem. America’s horrific murder rate is a result of the transformation of major American cities into Sierra Leone, Somalia, Rwanda and El Salvador.
Our murder rate . Youth Gangs in Chicago, Illinois Following the American Psychological Association’s Guidelines Kirsten Muhaw Criminal Justice Seminar Professor Ruck April 10, Youth Gangs in Chicago, Illinois According to the Chicago Police Report’s CompStat within .
The migration of African American Los Angeles gang members during the s to other United States cities, often for reasons other than some vast gang-inspired conspiracy, resulted in the spread of crack sales and an attendant wave of violence.
Other Cities Street gangs did not start in Los Angeles, nor is Los Angele the gang capital of the United States or the world. Tom Brokow gave Los Angeles this dubious title during a documentary, and it stuck. May 10, · The Real Problem With America’s Inner Cities and in response many people have attempted to define the problem solely in terms of insurgent American racism and violent police behavior.