What is a Gang?
The definition of a gang varies somewhat by state and local jurisdiction. In Florida, the legal definition for a criminal gang is defined in Florida Statutes 874. However, the following criteria are commonly accepted:
- The group has three or more members.
- Members of the group identify themselves with a name, colors, symbols, or any other means which identifies them as being a distinct group.
- The group has some level of organization and leadership.
- Members see themselves as a gang and want others to recognize them as a gang.
- The group creates an atmosphere of fear and intimidation.
- When its members commit criminal acts to further their group’s social or economic status, they are considered a criminal gang.
- How Are Gangs Identified?
- Gang Types
- How Do Gangs Recruit Their Members?
- Common Gang Initiations
- Why Young People Join Gangs?
- How Old Are Gang Members?
- Major Factors That May Contribute To Youth Gang Involvement
- Warning Signs That Your Child May Be Involved with a Gang
- What Can Parents Do To Prevent Gang Involvement?
- What Are Some School-based Anti-Gang Strategies?
- What Are Some Community Anti-Gang Strategies?
- Common Myths About Gangs
- How Do I Report Gang Activity?