FBI teams up to fight gangs in Houston
HOUSTON (KTRK) -- The FBI is teaming up several local law enforcement agencies on a new initiative, billed as a proactive attack on gangs. The campaign includes the use of billboards and a website.The website www.stophoustongangs.org was created to inform and educate the public about criminal gangs and provide a way for residents to report anonymous tips about potential criminal gang activity. This community policing initiative was designed to help keep our communities safe from gangs and the related violence they bring.
The website is a measure that utilizes technology to partner with the community and increase awareness through education regarding the threat of criminal gang activity. Residents can also access information about prevention and intervention programs.
Among the most important features:
- Option to anonymously report gang activity
- Statistics on gang activity
- How to tell if criminal activity is related to gangs
- Listing of the gangs at work in the Houston-Harris County area
- How to look for the signs and markings, such as tattoos of gang members
"This is a perfect example of what community policing is all about," said Chief McClelland. "If we can improve communications with our residents and stop one act of violence, then it's a success."
Harris County District Attorney Pat Lykos said, "We have the federal authorities, the state authorities and the local authorities all working together collaboratively in a coordinated fashion, if you will. A prime example of that is this extraordinary website. You know, the gangs say that they own the night. Well, this website shines the light of day on those thugs."
Gangs are a community problem that requires a collaborative police and community effort. Gang activity is down slightly in the Houston area this year, but law enforcement says this is not the time to let up. There are still 10,000 identified members of gangs in our area.
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