Many of the felonious crimes committed by gang members are crimes of recidivism; crimes committed by gang members who are--or will become--career criminals. These gang members have extensive criminal history records reflective of serious, habitual offend ers.

For this report, Department of Justice staff reviewed the background of four different gangs to determine if the gang members met the criteria for the California Career Criminal Apprehension Program as specified in Penal Code Section 13853.

The gangs selected for the review included one African American gang (Santana Block Crips), one Hispanic gang (Barrio Small Town), one Asian gang (Hung Pho), and one white gang (Sacto Skinheads).

The Santana Block Crips is a large gang based in Lynwood and Compton, California. It was formed in the early 1970s and has approximately 640 members. Their ages range from 14- to 54-years-old, and the majority are in their early to mid-20s. They were o ne of the first gangs to be involved in the trafficking and selling of crack cocaine; and members have been identified in Texas, Maryland, Louisiana, Colorado, and Arkansas.

The Barrio Small Town is a Hispanic gang located in Long Beach, California. It has been in existence for about 20 years, and there are approximately 315 members. During the last five years, they have become increasingly violent. Typical criminal activi ties include drive-by shootings, robberies, auto thefts, and narcotics trafficking. They are also involved in gang warfare with other Hispanic and Asian gangs. The youngest gang member is 12-years-old, and the oldest is 36.

The Hung Pho is a violent Asian gang that formed in the early 1980s. Their name was taken from the now-deceased leader, Hung Quoc Duong, whose nickname was "Hung Pho"--meaning "red fire." Most members of this gang are ethnic Chinese from Vietnam. They w ere originally based in Orange County but have now established a presence in the San Francisco Bay Area. There are approximately 40 members in this gang. Their criminal history records include arrests for murders, robberies, extortions, assaults, and ki dnappings. Gang members range in age from 23- to 44-years-old.

The Sacto Skins is a white gang located in Sacramento, California. They first came to the attention of law enforcement authorities in the mid-1980s. There are approximately 80 gang members who range in age from 17- to 28-years old. Their criminal activ ities include robbery, assault with a deadly weapon, murder, vehicle theft, and witness intimidation.

There are approximately 1,075 members in these 4 gangs. A review of approximately every fifth gang member revealed that 108 out of 191 had criminal history records. The remaining gang members had no such known record.

The following table summarizes the results of the review:
Total Number of Subjects Reviewed91
Total Number of Subjects with Criminal History Records108
Total Number of Arrests in the Criminal History Records695
Total Number of Felony Arrests398
Total Number of Felony Convictions81
Total Number of Career Criminals29
The gang members committed more felony crimes than misdemeanors. Gang members with criminal records averaged 6.4 arrests; 56.4 percent of which were adjudicated as felonies. Their conviction rate was 20.7 percent. If a gang member was arrested for a fe lony crime, then the chances of him being convicted were about one in five. Ninetyseven percent of the crimes committed by the gang members fell within the criteria of crimes set forth in Section 13853. Thirty-nine of the 191 gang members had criminal h istory records, which were sufficient for them to become subjects of the California Career Criminal Apprehension Program.

The following table depicts the level of criminal activities based on felony arrests committed by the 108 gang members:


Crime Type
Santana Block Crips
Barrio Small Town
Hung Pho
Sacto Skinheads
Total Crime
Robbery67 46279
Grand Theft54153173
Receiving Stolen Property19101131
Sex Crimes40004

Narcotic-related offenses (possession, possession for sale, and transporting and selling) account for 22.1 percent of the felony arrests associated with the 4 gangs. Robbery was the next highest crime type, with 19.8 percent. Property crimes of burglary , grand theft, and receiving stolen property represented 38.2 percent of the total. Assaults also ranked very high, with 10.3 percent.

One career criminal gang member was randomly selected from each gang and profiled. The following information summarizes each profile: