There are many different types of
gangs i.e., racial gangs, prison gangs, motorcycle gangs, small
geographical gangs, etc. Typically there maybe numerous
types of different gangs throughout any community. However
we will discuss gangs that are prevalent in the Northwest Indiana
and Chicagoland area.
Some of these gangs stem from prison
gangs that have returned to the streets and neighborhoods where
they originally started. These gangs have different religious
beliefs and/or code of honor, manifestos and/or mission statements.
Because of the differences and alliances to their perspective
gangs, the members show their affiliation by dress, writings,
tattoos, graffiti, etc. These types of behavior are known
as the LEFT & RIGHT rule. By dressing, writing, tattoos,
etc., the member shows his or her alliance to the gang and shows
rival gangs his or her gang designation.
In order to identify potential gang
members, you first must understand some basic information about
gangs. Gangs will not discriminate between age, sex, or
nationality. There are two main alliances that gangs will usually
identify with. These are known as "PEOPLE" and "FOLKS".
The "PEOPLE" gangs wear their identifiers
to the LEFT side of the body. This would include, but
is not limited to, hats, jewelry, or a rolled-up left pant leg.
"PEOPLE" also represent their affiliation with the number 5
and/or the 5-pointed star. In their drawings, a 5-pointed
crown, pyramid, top hat, crescent moon, or a rabbit head with
straight ears may be seen. An upside down pitchfork is
used to show disrespect to the rival "FOLKS" affiliation.
The "FOLKS" gangs wear their
identifiers to the RIGHT side of the body. This includes,
but is not limited to, hats, jewelry, or a rolled-up right pant
leg. They represent their affiliation with the number
6 and/or the 6-pointed Star of David. Their drawings may
consist of an upward pitchfork, a winged heart or a rabbit head
with one bent ear and they will draw an upside down 5 or crown
to show disrespect to the rival "PEOPLE" gangs.
A few street gangs belong to neither
the "FOLKS" nor the "PEOPLE". These independent gangs
feel they do not need other gang alliances or simply want to
form their own affiliation. These groups are often made
up of members of several different gangs and refer to themselves
as "Party Crews".
Gangs will change as necessary in
order to survive. In recent years, gangs have shifted to money-making
crimes. More and more gangs are competing in the illegal
markets of drug and gun sales. Many are found to be involved
in robberies, burglaries, car theft rings, and car jacking.
Members of the "PEOPLE" faction and members of the "FOLKS" faction
usually will not join forces but an exception may be made if
there is an opportunity for outstanding profits. Essentially,
the general rule on the street is "if it doesn't make dollar
(money), it doesn't make sense."