The New Jersey State Police today released the 2010 Street Gang Survey, the fourth such survey during the last nine years. Street gang investigators from around the state were queried to provide a broad spectrum of knowledge which goes well beyond census data for street gangs. It sheds light on the influence gangs have on the community around them, looks at questions of size, organization, patterns of criminality, and examines indicators of gang cohesion.
“I am proud of our talented analysts and Street Gang Unit members that have honed this intelligence product to a razor’s edge. This survey probes the collective law enforcement knowledge to cut to the core of what gangs mean to us all; what threats they pose and how their behavior is trending,” said Colonel Rick Fuentes, Superintendent of the New Jersey State Police. “Its contents are requisite information for any police agency forming anti-gang strategy, but accessible enough for any citizen concerned about the phenomenon of street gangs,” he added.
According to the latest findings, gangs do not appear to have spread significantly throughout the state, maintaining a presence in roughly the same number of municipalities as they did in the 2007 survey. The 2010 survey revealed that gangs were present in both urban and suburban municipalities, were relatively small and that few gangs engaged in the dramatic and violent crime which frequently brings them to the attention of the public.