Assessing Gang Activity in Montgomery County by Abby McCary

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									            Assessing Gang Activity
            in Montgomery County




Prepared by the Montgomery County Collaboration Council for
                Children, Youth and Families
             Assessing Gang Activity Workgroup
                       Presented to the
      Montgomery County Gang Prevention Task Force

                     September 2004
                                      TABLE OF CONTENTS


                SECTION                                                                   PAGE

                1. Executive Summary                                                      1

                2. Background                                                             2

                3. Purpose of the Report                                                  2

                4. Clarifying Definitions and the Continuum                               3

                5. Approach to Data Collection and Analysis                               4

                6. Montgomery County Demographics and Diversity                           5

                7. Gang-Involved Youth and Gang-Related Crime                             8

                8. Precursors to Gang Involvement: Risk Factors                           14

                9. Protective Factors                                                     19

                10. Summary of Key Findings: Relationship to the Continuum                20

                11. References                                                            22

                12. Appendices                                                            24




Acknowledgements: The Collaboration Council is grateful for the contributions by our partners in putting
together this document. We would like to extend a special thanks to: Assistant Chief Dee Walker, Captain
Evelyn Cahalen, Officer Rob Musser, Mary Jude Young, Clifford Burrell, Sergeant Sean Renauer,
Edward Clarke and Gail Nachman.


This report was created by the Montgomery County Collaboration Council for Children, Youth and
Families. Permission to copy, disseminate, or otherwise use information from this report is granted as
long as appropriate acknowledgement is given.
                                         1. Executive Summary

          To support the Gang Prevention Task Force in Montgomery County, the Collaboration Council’s
Youth Strategies Consolidated Grant Committee produced the following report to assist in the Task Force
in fulfilling two of its identified activities: 1) assess the nature and scope of gang activity and populations
which require concentrated gang prevention efforts; and 2) identify primary geographic areas and
populations which require concentrated gang prevention efforts. This report seeks to collect and analyze
data across the continuum of prevention, intervention and suppression. This document contains relevant
data from across many public and private agencies.

         As Maryland’s most populous and culturally diverse jurisdiction, Montgomery County faces
numerous challenges in meeting the need of its youth who are at-risk or involved in gangs. As of mid-
June 2004, there are 209 active gangs known to law enforcement agencies in Montgomery County; 536 or
29.15 percent are under age 18 years. Clearly the dynamic and complex environment within which gang-
related activities function make knowing exact numbers of gang-involved youth difficult. The data
currently available has a number of gaps. Many of these gaps relate to information simply not being
collected.

        This picture of gangs in Montgomery County, necessary for planning strategies and programs
along the continuum of services, includes a risk-focused assessment accompanying a description of the
number of gangs and gang-involved youth. The 1999 Montgomery County Comprehensive Strategy—A
Juvenile Justice Plan identified five priority risk factors for adolescent problem behaviors in Montgomery
County. They include: family management problems and family conflict; early academic failure
beginning in elementary school; early initiation of problem behaviors; early and persistent disruptive and
delinquent behavior; and extreme economic deprivation. To reflect cultural dimensions of gang
involvement in Montgomery County, an additional risk factor was added: linguistic and cultural isolation.

         Certain community-level factors make an area’s citizens vulnerable to gang membership and
gang crime. Individual factors have an equally important role to play along side the youth’s social
context. But a particular community and a youth’s social environment do not on their own dictate that a
youth will necessarily become involved in a gang. It is often a multiple number of factors that lead youth
to join gangs or engage in delinquent behaviors. These social conditions and individual situations have
not only contributed to the current state of gangs in Montgomery County, but could very well contribute
to the future growth of gang involvement among at-risk youth.

         Mapping the community-level risk factors identify at-risk neighborhoods for youth who live
there. When compared to a map of the top active gangs, nearly every community ranked at high risk
currently has known gang activity. The highest risk areas are present in the municipalities of
Gaithersburg, Rockville, and Takoma Park; the county’s most populous places. Every police district has
at least one of the top active gangs; MS-13 is present in every district. Using boundaries commonly
defined for planning purposes, mapping the neighborhood risk factors revealed areas of high risk in
Gaithersburg, Rockville, North Bethesda/Garrett Park, Aspen Hill, Kensington/Wheaton, Kemp Mill/
Four Corners, Colesville/White Oak, Fairland, Silver Spring, and Takoma Park.




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                                             2. Background

         In January 2002, the Governor’s Office on Crime Control and Prevention (GOCCP) redirected
several Federal and State funding streams into the Youth Strategies Consolidated Grant (YSCG) with the
responsibility for planning and expending the funding placed with local management boards in each
jurisdiction. Local management boards are created in state statute to plan, coordinate, fund and monitor
interagency approaches to systems and services that improve the well-being of children, youth and
families. In Montgomery County, the Montgomery County Collaboration Council for Children, Youth
and Families has been designated by the County Council and County Executive to be the local
management board.

         GOCCP’s charge to each LMB via the YSCG funding is to create a five year strategic plan to
prevent and measurably reduce substance abuse and juvenile delinquency through a combination of
systems change and direct services. A mandated YSCG Committee oversees the plan implementation and
determines the content of the annual proposal to GOCCP. In Year One of the YSCG, funding supported
half of the gang prosecutor position in the State’s Attorney’s Office.

        For the Year Two YSCG (Fiscal Year 2004), the Collaboration Council received additional
funding to broaden the focus beyond gang prosecution to prevention, thus beginning the Gang
Subcommittee of the YSCG Committee. The purpose of the Subcommittee was to bring together key
organizations to determine how to create or enhance prevention services using the new YSCG funding, in
the Wheaton and Silver Spring/Takoma Park areas of Montgomery County. Due to widespread attention
given to the issue of gangs, it was determined that the focus for analyzing and responding to gang activity
should shift to the entire county. Two workgroups were created: 1) Assessing Gang Activity and 2)
Identifying Local Resources. This report is the result of the Assessing Gang Activity Workgroups efforts.
A report is also being produced by the “Identifying Local Resources Workgroup.”

        As the Collaboration Council was addressing gang activity, the County Executives for
Montgomery County and Prince George’s County announced the formation of a Joint County Gang
Prevention Task Force that also created Gang Prevention Task Forces in each of the counties. The charge
to the “Assessing Gang Activity” Workgroup was very similar to two activities of the Montgomery
County Gang Task Force:

        1) Assess nature and scope of gang activity in Montgomery County; and
        2) Identify primary geographic areas and populations that require concentrated gang prevention
           efforts.


                                         3. Purpose of Report

         The primary task of the “Assessing Youth Gang Activity” workgroup was to provide an accurate
county and community-level picture of youth gang activities and the conditions that can lead to youth
gang involvement. While the Police Department and the State’s Attorney’s Office maintain records on
gang activity, no other statistics were regularly collected by public or private agencies that reported on
gang and gang-related activity or the number of youth who were engaging in risky activities that could
lead to gang involvement. In the absence of these data, anecdotal information abounds which has led to
greater visibility regarding gangs, but does not help to accurately quantify the size and context of the
problem.




Montgomery County Collaboration Council for Children, Youth and Families                                 2
Given this backdrop, the purposes of this report are:

        1) To create an integrated data document with reliable statistical information as well as
           qualitative data that is currently collected by many public and private agencies;
        2) To identify data gaps;
        3) To facilitate data-driven decision-making in determining recommendations for public policies
           and allocation of resources; and
        4) To establish a publicly agreed-upon baseline to evaluate the results of actions taken as a result
           of the Task Force across a continuum of prevention, intervention and suppression activities.


                              4. Clarifying Definitions and the Continuum

        Getting a clear picture of gang activity requires the integration of public safety and public health,
each bringing their own definitions and approaches to achieving individual and community well-being.
These worlds converge within the work of the Task Force’s three subcommittees: prevention,
intervention and suppression. Definitions of these three parts of the continuum and their related overall
goals have been developed to guide each Subcommittee’s work, as follows:

 Definition                    Target Populations                                            Goal
Prevention     Targets:                                               Build resiliency and protective factors so that
                                                                      youth exhibit healthy, pro-social behaviors and
                  •   general population (all youth and their         do not join gangs or form gangs with the focus
                      families) or                                    of anti-social/violent behaviors.
                  •   a segment of the population that shares the
                      same general risks; or
                  •   a specific subgroup of the general population
                      whose risk is greater.

Intervention   Targets individuals who:                               Changes risky behaviors of youth (and families)
                                                                      so that these behaviors will not lead to gang
                  •   have already exhibited those risk factors       involvement.
                      which predict gang involvement;
                  •   whose living conditions put them notably at     Prevent specific youth from further behaviors or
                      risk (older sibling is gang involved, ex); or   interactions with gangs/gang members
                  •   have joined a gang but are not involved in
                      criminal activities.                            Youth safely leave gangs

Suppression    Targets individuals who are gang members and           Deter the criminal activities of entire gangs,
               suspected of criminal activity; serious and violent    dissolve them, and remove individual criminal
               offenders                                              gang members from them by means of arrest,
                                                                      prosecution and incarceration.

        In order to obtain the most comprehensive assessment of gang activity, an examination of data
along this continuum must occur. It is recognized that these three areas overlap and do not have discrete
boundaries. From a public health and youth development perspective, the purpose of a continuum is to
ensure that youth/families obtain the right services and supports at the right time so that well-being is
enhanced and risky and illegal behaviors decrease. For public safety, this can include the removal of
chronic and serious offenders from the community via incarceration.

        Since the target population for prevention is all youth (and their families), the data that are
important here are the county and community-level demographics. Also important are those data
describing communities or groups of residents for whom research and experience has shown that


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protective factors are not readily in place to keep the risk of gang involvement low; these often
interrelated factors include: “poverty, unemployment, declining economic infrastructure, disintegration of
a sense of community and drug activity” (Michigan State University 2004).

        Intervention looks at specifically identified youth who live in communities or families where
conditions put them at further risk and where specific programs and services are needed to respond to
those conditions and these individuals. Here, relevant Montgomery County data reveals the current level
and trends regarding the numbers of youth and families that are engaged in risky behaviors and/or are
now involved in relevant service areas (child welfare, domestic violence, juvenile justice, etc.).

         Those involved in the suppression end of the continuum—the law enforcement and justice
systems—are the sources of most statistical data describing local gangs and their activity. The
Montgomery County Police Department and the State’s Attorney’s Office use a definition that has its
roots in the FBI’s National Crime Information Center (OJJDP 2002). A gang is defined as “a formal or
informal ongoing organization, association, or group of three or more persons who: (1) have a common
name or common identifying signs, colors or symbols and; (2) have members or associates who,
individually or collectively, engage in or have engaged in a pattern of criminal street gang activity.”


                           5. Approach to Data Collection and Analysis

        The Assessing Gang Activity Workgroup used the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency
Prevention’s (OJJDP) Guide to Assessing Gang Activity to identify the questions to be answered and
types and sources of data to answer those questions. This guide can be found at on the National Youth
Gang Center’s site at www.iir.com/nygc.

         While the Montgomery County Gang Prevention Task Force is concerned with all gang activity,
this report is concerned only with youth who are at-risk or involved in gangs. The Suppression
Committee may have taken a broader view, given the number of gang members who are adults. The
workgroup anticipates that the final report to the County Executive will contain this broader data.

        The data considered for this report included data from the most reliable and appropriate sources.
These sources are cited and reflect data collection by county, state, and federal agencies according to
precise definitions and procedures. Because the purpose of the report was to assess the true nature and
scope of gangs in Montgomery County, data—in most cases—avoided the presentation of anecdotal
statements without evidence.

       Data Types                                   Data Sources                               Informs
 Montgomery County’s       •   United States 2000 Census                                   Prevention
 growth and population     •   Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene
 characteristics           •   Maryland National Capital Park & Planning Commission 2003
                               Census Update Survey
                           •   Montgomery County Public Schools
 Community and             •   Montgomery County Public Schools                            Intervention
 individual risk-factors   •   Montgomery County Police Department, Family Crimes
 for gang-involvement          Division
                           •   Montgomery County Department of Health and Human
                               Services
                           •   Maryland Department of Juvenile Services
                           •   Maryland State Department of Education
                           •   Maryland Department of Human Resources
                           •   United States 2000 Census


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          Data Types                                        Data Sources                                Informs
    Number and                    •   Montgomery County Police Department: Gang Unit and            Intervention
    characteristics of gang-          Education Facilities Officers                                 Suppression
    involved youth and            •   Montgomery County Public Schools, School Safety and
    gang-related behaviors            Security
                                  •   State’s Attorney’s Office
    Perceptions of youth          •   Identity, Inc.                                                All
    and parents regarding
    gangs

        This report does not contain much data that describes the perceptions of various stakeholders
regarding gang and gang-related activity. Resources prevented extensive surveying and focus groups for
youth, parents, community members, businesses, and those employed in the many public and private
child-serving and public safety agencies who are impacted by policies and experience services (or lack
thereof) directly. The Montgomery County Gang Prevention Task Force did conduct several community
forums and it is anticipated that those data will be incorporated into that final report.


                               6. Montgomery County Demographics and Diversity

       Large Population and Land Area. With 914,900 residents in 2003, Montgomery County is
Maryland’s most populous jurisdiction and is the second largest county in the Washington, DC
metropolitan area after Fairfax County, Virginia (M-NCPPC 2003). The rate of population growth since
1990 was one of the fastest paced among larger jurisdictions in the region. No other county in Maryland
grew by as many people as did Montgomery County.

          While at 496 square miles Montgomery County is not the largest jurisdiction for land area in the
state, it does rank second behind Baltimore City in population density with 1,843 people per square mile.
This large population, coupled with a large land area, impacts the distribution of public safety, social
services, recreation/leisure, and education resources to ensure access by all residents.

         In addition to the County government, there are 19 municipalities in the County. In 2003, two,
Gaithersburg and Rockville, rank second and fourth respectively, within the State; Takoma Park, 13th.
Some of these cities also maintain their own police force and, to varying degrees, support education and
social services for its residents.

         High Cultural, Ethnic and Linguistic Diversity. The County is also Maryland’s most ethnically
and culturally diverse jurisdiction with 12 percent of the population identifying themselves as Hispanic or
Latino and 27 percent of the population born outside the United States. The minority population of
Montgomery County accounted for 125 percent of the county’s population growth since 1990. Almost
three quarters of the growth in Montgomery County since 2000 has been due to international migration,
resulting in an estimated 33,868 new international residents in the three years following the 2000 Census
(Census 2003).1
         The ethnic composition of the public schools has rapidly shifted from nearly all white to a diverse
ethnic and racial blend. There is no majority population in the public school system with 22 percent of the
139,682 students being African-American; 14 percent Asian-American; 19 percent Hispanic and 45
percent white (MCPS 2003).


1
  The census does capture undocumented residents, but fails to be completely comprehensive and may miss some
residents who enter the United States without documentation or those who enter legally for temporary stay but fail to
leave when their time is up. Studies do show that undocumented and legal immigrants have similar residential
patterns.

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         However, diversity goes beyond these broad categories with students coming from over 150
foreign countries, speaking over 120 different languages. Nearly 9 percent of the current public school
students are English language learners with the fastest growing portion of those being students born in the
United States. While the children may be learning English, they often live in a home for which English
is not used. In 2003, 32 percent of Montgomery County’s residents spoke a language other than English
at home. And 78,123 (9 percent) of residents spoke English less than “very well”. Of these, half were
speaking Spanish and more than one quarter were speaking Asian and Pacific Island languages (M-
NCPPC 2003).

        Youth Population. Just over 25 percent or 221,758 of Montgomery County’s residents are under
18 years of age with 11.3 percent falling within the age range of 10 to 17 years (most likely 4th grade in
elementary school through high school). In 1990, 23.5 percent of the population was under 18 years of
age.


                              Montgomery County Age Distribution, 1990 and 2000
                                                 1990                           2000
                                                        Percent                        Percent of
                                         Number                       Number
                                                        of Total                         Total
                     0 to 4 Years         57,138         7.5 %         60,173            6.9 %
                     5 to 17 Years       121,106        16.0 %        161,585           18.5 %
                     10 to 17 Years       70,709         9.3 %         98,282           11.3 %
                     0 to 17 Years       178,244        23.5 %        221,758           25.4 %
                     18 to 29 Years      140,737        18.6 %        117,702           13.5 %

                   Source: 1990 and 2000 U.S. Census




                     Montgomery County Race of Population Under Age 18, 1990 and 2000
            Under Age 18 Years                              1990                    2000
                                                               Percent of              Percent of
                                                    Number                   Number
            Race                                                  Total                   Total
              White alone                          128,704       72.2 %     133,071      60.0 %
              African American alone                25,674       14.4 %      38,047      17.2 %
              Asian or Pacific Islander alone       17,374        9.7 %      23,907      10.8 %
              American Indian alone                    437        0.2 %         684       0.3 %
              Other alone                            6,055        3.4 %      14,007       6.3 %
              Two or More Races                          --                  12,042       5.4 %

            Hispanic or Latino                      15,668         8.8 %         31,220        14.1 %

          Source: 1990 and 2000 U.S. Census




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         Enrollment data from MCPS show the increasing cultural diversity among youth, with the
greatest diversity in elementary schools.

                        Montgomery County Public School Students, 2003-2004 School Year
                                         African               American                  Total
                               White    American     Asian        Indian   Hispanic Enrolled
               All Students     44.6       22.1       14.3          0.3      18.7       139,098
               High School      47.6       21.5       14.5          0.3      16.2        42,802
               Middle School    45.4       22.3        14           0.3      18.1        32,301
               Elementary       42.3       22.1       14.5          0.4      20.8        63,071

              Source: Montgomery County Public Schools, Schools at a Glance, 2003-2004 Enrollment Data


                                 Youth Population in Montgomery County, 2002

Total Population Ages 10 to 17                           117,663
                                                                                      Hispanic
White, non-Hispanic                                       72,251
                                                                                        12%            African
Black/African-American, non-Hispanic                      17,903              Asian &                 American
                                                                               Pacific                  15%
American Indian & Alaskan Native, non-Hispanic                505             Islander
                                                                                11%
Asian & Pacific Islander, non-Hispanic                    12,879
Hispanic or Latino                                        14,125

                                                                                     White
                                                                                     62%




Source: Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (source of latest data by this age group).



         Economic Diversity—Increased Poverty. Although Montgomery County is among the most
affluent counties in America and leads Maryland in per-capita income at $35,684, there were 47,024
Montgomery County residents living below the Federal poverty level in 2000 (Census 2000).

         At the same time, Montgomery County has the highest cost of living compared with all other
jurisdictions in Maryland. Federal measures of poverty inadequately describe the income needed to
provide for child care and housing; and numbers based on this measure inadequately describe the
numbers of families in need. Instead, the self-sufficiency standard, developed by the Community Action
Board to determine the “true cost of living,” is a more appropriate measure of how much income is
needed, for a family of a given composition in a given place, to adequately meet its basic needs—without
public or private assistance. In 2003, the estimated minimum self-sufficiency wage for a family of three
(adult and one preschool and one school-age child) was $51,086 a year (Community Action Board 2003).
In 2003, if this family of three earned the monthly income at the Federal poverty line of $1,271, they
would have just 30 percent of the amount needed to be self-sufficient in Montgomery County. Currently,
23 percent of the public school students participate in the Free and Reduced Meals (FARMs) program
(MCPS 2003).




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                        7. Gang-Involved Youth and Gang Related Crime

Gangs and Gang Membership

         The dynamic and complex environment within which gang-related activities occur make it
difficult to know the exact numbers of gang-involved youth. The Montgomery County Police
Department began tracking gang activity in 1992. Currently, this data is collected in the Gang
Intelligence Database.

         The information gathered from the Montgomery County Police Department and local city police
departments are typically based on intelligence reports and documented gang-related criminal activity by
the arresting officer. Gang intelligence in the database has two components: incidences that involve gang
members or gang-related offenses. Data is entered into the system by the county’s gang unit officers.
The actual gang members and associates found in the database have had some type of contact with police;
individuals are removed from the database if they no longer have contacts with police within 5 years.
Criteria for classification as a gang member range from the individual admitting to gang affiliation, to
informants confirmation, to arrests with known gang members. Important to note, since the database is
focused on intelligence gathering, the database only documents those individuals who have come to law
enforcement’s attention.

        According to the Montgomery County Police Department, there are approximately 20 to 22 active
and significant gangs which are responsible for (1) recent criminal activity, (2) expanding membership,
and (3) posing an increasing threat to their community in Montgomery County. The Montgomery County
Police Department estimates a range of 540 to 560 active gang members and associates (MCPD 2004).

         It is not possible to have absolute numbers because this population is fluid. This range is
established through a review of recent data entries of District Gang Coordinators and their estimates of
active gangs and gang members. Additionally many forms of trend analysis are not possible due to the
purpose, structure, limitations and format of the Gang Intelligence Database. We are relying upon this
database by default, as it currently represents the best data collection system available. Simply put, the
database is used to collect information about individuals involved in criminal gang activity and was not
designed with a reporting function. The Montgomery County Police Department adheres to the Code of
Federal Regulations (21-CFR) with regard to the use and maintenance of this database.

         Over the course of the last five years (2000-2004), over 2,400 cumulative entries have been made
into the member and associate portion of the Gang Intelligence Database (MCPD 2004). The database
includes information about suspected as well as confirmed members. These gang members are not
necessarily residents of Montgomery County; rather they are known to the Montgomery County Police
Department. Since 2000, the Montgomery County Police Department has received intelligence
information on 209 total gangs; although only a small portion of these gangs are currently active. Gangs
are present in each police district in Montgomery County. The map in Appendix A shows the location of
activity associated with the top twenty gangs. Concentrations of gang activity occur in areas near Takoma
Park/Langley Park, Wheaton and Gaithersburg.

         The mobility of gangs has increased. In the early 1990’s, gang membership was school and
neighborhood focused. Over the years, as police have formally tracked gang activity and shared
information across jurisdictions, they are seeing local gangs associating with like-minded groups in other
jurisdictions throughout the Washington, DC metropolitan region. Certain gangs operate nationally (and
even internationally) and have enough organizational structure to be able to track members who move
from one jurisdiction to another with the expectation that the gang member will continue participation in
the “chapter” in a new location or possibly face harmful consequences. Other gangs will move from


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jurisdiction to jurisdiction. For example, a gang member may live in Montgomery County but commit
crimes in Washington, DC or Virginia.

        Of the active gangs, police estimates generally indicate that 75 percent are predominately
comprised of African-American members, while 25 percent are comprised of Hispanic/Latino members.
However, of the active gang members and associates, of all ages, police estimates generally indicate the
majority of these active members are Hispanic/Latino and a smaller percentage is African-American. In
essence, while there are more African-American gangs, their membership is smaller in number. And
while the number of Hispanic/Latino gangs is smaller, the membership of these gangs is larger.

        Of the cumulative individual gang members and associates documented in the Gang Intelligence
Database from 2000 to 2004, 22 percent are under age 18 years. The average age is 16 with the youngest
being 10 years old. The District Gang Coordinators estimate that youth represent approximately a third of
the current active gang members.

                               Gang-involvement by Age, Cumulative 2000-2004
                                                           Percent of Gang-identified
                                Age Range                    Persons by Age Range
                        14 years and under                             4%
                        15 years through 21 years                     68 %
                        Over 21 years                                 28 %
                        Total (known age)                            100 %

                      Source: Montgomery County Police Department, Gang Intelligence Database


        Of these cumulative (2000-2004) individual documented gang members ages 10 to 17, 44 percent
are African-American and 31 percent are Hispanic or Latino. These percentages shift among the older
gang members and associates entered into the database over the period 2000-2004: 35 percent are
African-American and 37 percent are Hispanic or Latino. However, the most recent data for the last 18
months indicate that of juveniles entered into the gang intelligence database 33 percent are African-
American and 47 percent are Hispanic or Latino. Of adults, in this same period, 24 percent are African-
American and 57 percent are Hispanic or Latino.


                              Youth-involved Gang Membership by Race/Ethnicity,
                                Last 18 Months (January 2003 to August 2004)
                                                                                         Active Gang-
                          Ethnicity/Race                       Youth Population         Involved Youth
                                                              Ages 10 to 17, 2002        Ages 10-17,
                                                                                        Last 18 Months
                                                             Number     % of Total        % of Total
          White, non-Hispanic                                72,251      61.4 %              10 %
          African-American, non-Hispanic                      17,903     15.2 %              32 %
          Asian & Pacific Islander, non-Hispanic              12,879     10.9 %               1%
          American Indian/Alaskan Native, non-Hispanic         505        0.4 %               na
          Hispanic or Latino                                 14,125      12.0 %              46 %
          Unknown Race                                          --          --               11 %
          All Youth                                          117,663

         Source: Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene and Montgomery County Police Department




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                                                                              Active Youth Gang Population
     Youth Population in Montgomery County, 2002
                                                                          in Montgomery County, Last 18 Months

                   Hispanic
                     12%                  African
           Asian &                       American                                Hispanic               Unknown
            Pacific                        15%                                     46%                    11%
           Islander
             11%


                                                                            Asian &
                                                                             Pacific
                                                                            Islander                     African
                  White                                                        1%                       American
                                                                                       White
                  62%                                                                  10%                32%


                               Source: Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene and
                              Montgomery County Police Department Gang Intelligence Database

                                          Gang-involved Youth by Specific Age,
                                     Last 18 Months (January 2003 to August 2004)

                                                             12 years
                                                  10 years            13 years
                                                               2%
                                                    1%                  3%
                                                                           14 years
                                                                             11%
                                       17 years
                                         31%


                                                                             15 years
                                                                               25%

                                                  16 years
                                                    27%

                          Source: Montgomery County Police Department Gang Intelligence Database

        Of the cumulative individual entries in the database from 2000 to 2004, of all ages for whom
gender is known, 91 percent are male and 9 are percent female. For the cumulative youth entries 10 to 17
years old, the gender breakdown is 88 percent male and 12 percent female.

Overall Gang-related Crime

         Gang involvement itself is not a crime and not all gang members necessarily commit crimes or
offenses for which they can be or are arrested. Gang participation rises to a level of concern when either
of the following occurs:

        1) A gang–involved individual is accused of committing an offense or crime (referred to as
           “gang involved”); or
        2) The gang (a group of its members) commits the offense or crime as part of the gang’s
           affiliations activities (referred to as “gang-related”).



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Gang-related criminal incidences are classified as such by the police department when the suspect’s
behavior is motivated by gang affiliation.

        The following table illustrates the total number of reported gang-related incidents for the first two
quarters of 2004, as entered by Montgomery County’s District Gang Coordinators. Most gang-related
crime involve vandalism, assaults and weapon charges. The proportion of gang-related crime remains
small in comparison to overall crime.

                  Frequency of Gang-related Incidences for all Ages, 1st and 2nd Quarters 2004
                   1st Quarter 2004                                           2ndt Quarter 2004
    Vandalism                            11                    Vandalism                             34
    Assault                              10                    Assault                               19
    Weapon Offense                        7                    Weapon Offense                         8
    CDS Offense                           5                    CDS Offense                            6
    Robbery                               5                    Alcohol/DWI                            3
    Burglary                              4                    Disorderly Conduct                     3
    Larceny                               3                    Larceny                                3
    Trespassing                           3                    Arson                                  2
    Alcohol/DWI                           1                    Burglary                               2
    Auto Theft                            1                    Auto Theft                             2
    Disorderly Conduct                    1                    Robbery                                2
    Sex Assault                           1                    Child Abuse/Pornography                1
    Threats                               1                    Sex Assault                            1
    Arson                                 0                    Threats                                1
    Child Abuse/Pornography              0                     Trespassing                            0
                           Source: Montgomery County Police Department, Gang Intelligence Database

        Gang-involved Youth Crime and Offenses. Data describing the extent of gang-involved
juveniles who interact with the law enforcement and the juvenile justice systems can be found in these
contact points: Montgomery County Police Department (citations and arrests), Maryland Department of
Juvenile Services, State’s Attorney Office, and Sixth Circuit’s Juvenile Court.2 But there are
inconsistencies in definitions, analysis and reporting practices among the agencies.

         An important set of data to acquire would be the rate and types of offenses committed by gang-
involved youth and the rate and types of gang-related offenses compared against all offenses that are
committed by youth. At this time, this data is unavailable. The following table contains a breakdown of
all juvenile offenses. Documented information that defines the percentage of all juvenile crimes that are
committed by gang-involved youth or are gang-related is currently unavailable.




2
  For Year Three (FY ’05) the Collaboration Council has just received YSCG funding to specifically analyze the key
decision-making points and processes at each point which determine how many (and which) youth go further within
the law enforcement, juvenile justice process and concurrently what community-based intervention resources are
available at each point. A flow chart showing these decision points is available from the Collaboration Council.

Montgomery County Collaboration Council for Children, Youth and Families                                       11
                              Violent and Serious Offenses by Juveniles in FY2003
                                                                                          Number (%)
                                                                                         Committed by
                                              Offense                All Juveniles      Gang-involved
                                                                                        Youth or Gang-
                                                                                        Related Offense
                                Homicide                                       1              NA
              Violent Offenses  Rape                                           8              NA
                    143         Robbery                                       88              NA
                                Aggravated Assault                            46              NA
           Non-Violent, Serious Burglary                                     279              NA
                Offenses        Theft (minus shoplifting)                    222              NA
                    742         Auto Theft                                   241              NA
                                Shoplifting                                  475              NA
                                Assault                                      583              NA
                                Arson                                          9              NA
                                Forgery                                       11              NA
                                Embezzlement                                   3              NA
                                Poss. Of Stolen Property                       2              NA
          Less Serious Offenses Vandalism                                    199              NA
                   2,716        Weapons                                      126              NA
                                Sex Offense                                   34              NA
                                Drugs                                        496              NA
                                Child Abuse                                    6              NA
                                Liquor Violations                            516              NA
                                Disorderly Conduct                            39              NA
                                Miscellaneous                                217              NA

        Source: Montgomery County Police Department, Family Crimes Division (Note: This information is not official
        UCR data and may not conform to UCR standards)

        The Department of Juvenile Services (DJS) does not track, through its database, those youth
under its responsibility who are involved in gangs and for whom exiting gangs is a condition of their
probation. DJS policy requires that the youth admit gang involvement to be classified as such—in some
cases, youth (and family members) deny involvement. Communication regarding gang membership is not
necessarily formally transmitted as the youthful offender moves through the law enforcement and judicial
systems. At this time, DJS does not record nor disaggregate data for Hispanic or Latino youth for any
purpose; they hope to change this in the future.

        In Fiscal Year 2003, the State’s Attorney’s Office prosecuted 60 cases involving gang members
who were charged with a crime. Further information is being sought to identify the ages, crimes and
adjudication of these gang-related prosecutions.

Interface with School Safety

    Each Montgomery County public school is required to report a serious or unusual incident to the
Office of School Performance as specified in MCPS Regulation COB-RA, Reporting a Serious Incident.
During the 2003–2004 school year, there were 1,572 reported incidents excluding medical and accident
related incidents. There were 963 incidents (61%) in which there was some level of police involvement.
Of those 963 incidents, 745 (77%) did not involve an arrest, and 218 (13%) did involve some type of an
arrest or charging. While these reports might refer to obvious gang-related indications, they are not
designed specifically to capture gang-related incidents.

Montgomery County Collaboration Council for Children, Youth and Families                                              12
     The Montgomery County Department of Police and the Montgomery County Public Schools
implemented an Educational Facilities Officer (EFO) program for the 2003–2004 school year. This school
year, 2004–2005, 17 EFOs will be assigned to selected high schools, middle schools, and elementary
schools, alternative and special education sites, and private schools within a specific school cluster. The
goal of the EFO program is to maintain and enhance a safe and secure learning environment for students,
staff, and the school community with a special emphasis on emergency preparedness. The EFOs also will
serve as a resource for Montgomery County Police Department prevention and outreach programs for
students. These programs include drug and alcohol awareness, violence prevention, gang awareness,
conflict resolution and mediation, traffic safety, and mentoring opportunities. The EFOs are working to
identify and monitor incidents of gang-related activity involving students. As of June 15 in the 2003–
2004 school year, there were 125 documented EFO contacts with students that resulted in an arrest or
issuance of a citation. Of these 125 contacts, six (5%) were documented as gang-related—four
aggravated assault arrests and two weapons violations. This information is included in the police data
reported on page 11 of this report. EFOs, patrol officers, and investigators have been trained in gang
recognition and will continue to monitor gang related activity that impacts the youth of Montgomery
County.

        In Section 8 “Precursors to Gang Involvement: Measurable Risk Factors,” there is further
discussion regarding other school-based data, such as suspensions, that research has shown often leads to
gang involvement. This information is particularly relevant to overall prevention and intervention prior to
actual gang involvement and membership.

Other Local and National Measures of Youth Gang-Involvement

        A national survey of law enforcement agencies in 2002 noted that the number of jurisdictions
experiencing gang problems may be stabilizing. The National Youth Gang Center (NYGC) estimated that
there were around 21,500 gangs with 731,500 gang members active in the United States in 2002. But
since 2001, 42 percent of the cities and counties survey indicated that their youth gang problem was
“getting worse,” and only 16 percent indicated it was “getting better” (Egley and Major 2004).

         The U.S. Department of Education has also found a significant increase in the number of students
reporting the presence of gangs at schools since 1989. Much of the growth is correlated with an increase
in the presence of weapons and drugs in the nation’s schools, seen higher in more populated, urban
communities. Students note that gangs are probably responsible for most of the disruptions and violent
victimization in schools and a decrease in school safety (Howell and Lynch 2000).

        Identity, a non-profit youth development organization in Montgomery County has surveyed a
sample of the Latino youth population to understand and measure risk and protective factors for a variety
of youth behaviors. Results from their Positive Youth Development Survey of Latino youth found 20
percent of the 325 middle school youth surveyed reported having been involved in gang-related activities
and 12 percent reported being a member. The number was similar for the 446 high school students, 20
percent with some involvement and 11.1 percent being a member.

Challenges to Measuring and Using Data Describing Gang-Related Activity

        The data currently available has a number of gaps. Many of these gaps relate to information
simply not being collected or analyzed across units within a single agency and/or across government
departments or agencies. The following are some of the areas where data was unavailable to validate or
invalidate local impressions:



Montgomery County Collaboration Council for Children, Youth and Families                                 13
        •   Data around the use of force in gang recruitment, violent initiations, and force and other
            threats used to continue unwilling-membership;
        •   Data documenting gang involvement by young women, which can include the above violence
            related scenarios as well as rape and becoming pregnant as a way to avoid gang involvement;
        •   Data indicating the relationship between gang membership and other social pressures, such as
            risky sexual activity leading to pregnancy and parenthood or STD;
        •   A longitudinal study of gang-involved youth and their families to track behaviors, reasons for
            becoming gang involved, how long they have been gang-involved, and their utilization of
            intervention and support services prior and during gang involvement;
        •   Trend data on as many of the statistical information that is collected describing gang-involved
            youth; and
        •   Analysis to gauge public acknowledgement of the “gang problem.”

         The only documented numbers of gang-involved youth are those youth known to law
enforcement. These estimates are not the complete picture needed for a community-level response to the
problem. The OJJDP model for assessing gangs is based on the premise that to prevent a problem from
occurring, the factors contributing to the development of the problem must be identified and addressed
(OJJDP 2002). At-risk youth are those youth 1) who live in families or communities that put them at at-
risk; 2) who have already exhibited the individual risk factors which predict gang involvement; or 3) have
joined a gang but are not involved in criminal activities.

                 8. Precursors to Gang Involvement: Measurable Risk Factors

          A complete picture of gangs in Montgomery County, necessary for planning strategies and
programs along the continuum of services, includes a risk-focused assessment accompanying a
description of the number of gangs and gang-involved youth. In 1999, Montgomery County developed a
five-year Montgomery County Comprehensive Strategy—A Juvenile Justice Plan for preventing
delinquency, intervening in early delinquent behavior and responding to serious, violent and chronic
juvenile offending. The community assessment, as part of the plan’s development, identified five priority
risk factors for adolescent problem behaviors in Montgomery County. These risk factors are:
       a.     Family management problems and family conflict;
       b.     Early academic failure beginning in elementary school;
       c.     Early initiation of problem behaviors;
       d.     Early and persistent disruptive and delinquent behavior; and
       e.     Extreme economic deprivation. (DHHS, et.al. 1999).

         These risk factors are similar to the risk factors for gang-involvement and gang-related crimes.
Additional risk factors for gang involvement among at-risk youth include difficult to measure individual
attitudes and social contexts. Drawing from much of the OJJDP research, risk factors for gang
membership in addition to those predictive of delinquent behaviors include:
         • an individual’s desire for recognition, status, safety, security, or a sense of belonging;
         • an individual’s high commitment to delinquent peers, low attachment to parents, general
             social isolation; and
         • a community socialization process toward the gang lifestyle in which a gang is an extension
             of the family or socially acceptable. (Esbensen 2000 and Spergel, et. al 1994).

        Some of the informal discussions with youth in Montgomery County also demonstrate that some
youth do not feel that the decision to join a gang is a voluntary choice (Prevention and Intervention Joint
Subcommittee Meeting, May 18, 2004). Youth express being forced into joining a gang. Therefore,
regardless of the other risk factors, youth may be part of a gang involuntarily. This fact is not captured in
much of the research around precursors to gang involvement and should be further explored to determine

Montgomery County Collaboration Council for Children, Youth and Families                                   14
if this is truly a part of the culture for most Montgomery County youth or simply just among those heard
from.
          Data on gangs in Montgomery County suggests that recent immigrants and youth in the Latino
community are at greater risk of gang-involvement. Results from Identity’s Positive Youth Development
Survey of Latino youth found that over half of the 325 middle school youth did not feel safe at school
because of gangs and over a quarter reported staying at home at least once because they felt unsafe to go
out, 62 percent of the 446 high school youth were not always in the company of an adult after school, and
35 and 34 percent of middle and high school youth felt depressed for at least a two-week period. The
high concentration of gangs exists in the communities with a higher Latino population.

        To reflect cultural dimensions of gang involvement in Montgomery County, an additional risk
factor was added to the Comprehensive Plan priority risk factors:
        f. Linguistic and cultural isolation.

       The following narrative discusses each of these risk factors in turn, with supplemental data found
in Appendix B.

a. Family Management Problems and Family Conflict

        The Montgomery County Comprehensive Plan defined poor family management practices as
“parents not having clear expectations for behavior, failing or unable to supervise and monitor children
and administering excessively severe, harsh or inconsistent punishment” and family conflict to include
domestic violence and child abuse (1999).

        While family disorganization does not on its own predict gang involvement, communities with a
high concentration of unstable families may accentuate the other factors that lead youth to gang
membership (Spergel et. al 1994). Without clear expectations about acceptable behavior, youth who are
victims of abuse or neglect, witnesses to domestic violence are at a higher risk of developing problem
behaviors and seeking support outside the family (CST 1998). Some youth choose gangs as a surrogate
family.

        •   Children were present in nearly half of all 1,557 reported domestic violence in fiscal year
            2003.
        •   Investigations of child abuse and neglect in 2003 were at a rate of 11.3 per 1,000 children;
            1,213 cases indicated abuse or neglect or could not be substantiated.

        See Appendix B for more data.

b. Early Academic Failure Beginning in Elementary School

         Academic failure at any point in a youth’s life can lower self-esteem. Early academic failure
increases the risk of problem behaviors in adolescents. Youth who are unsuccessful in school may feel
that they can experience a kind of success in gangs.

         Youth who do poorly in school have low commitment and attachment to school and are less
likely to be part of socially acceptable groups such as clubs or activity programs. Gang membership fills
the gap not being met in the school environment (Michigan State University 2004).

        •   2,466 5th graders scored only basic on reading and 2,736 scored basic on math—more than
            half were student receiving free and reduced price meals and two thirds were either African
            American or Hispanic in the 2003-2004 school year.


Montgomery County Collaboration Council for Children, Youth and Families                                   15
        See Appendix B for more data.

c. Early Initiation of Problem Behaviors

        Youth who are engaged in other adolescent problem behaviors are more likely to find the gang
mentality and lifestyle attractive, and therefore, at a higher risk of becoming part of a gang. In a
comparative study, youth who were non-delinquent had attitudes and behaviors very different from
delinquent and gang youth. Youth were found to fall along a continuum: from non-delinquent to minor
delinquent to serious delinquent to gang member. Gang members engaged in the most risk-seeking
behaviors and were more impulsive (Esbensen 2000).

        Problem behaviors, identified in the literature outlining the risk factors for gang membership
include: alcohol and drug use, dropping out of school, sexual activity, and committing crimes.

        •   7.8 percent of 8th graders and 18.9 percent of 10th graders admitted to using some type of drug
            other than alcohol or tobacco in 2002;
        •   While reported alcohol use has decrease among 12th graders has decreased since 1996, 39.1
            percent have used a form of alcohol in the last 30 days; a quarter of all students reported
            binge drinking. In 2002, 23.6 percent have used marijuana and 26.9 percent used any other
            drug other than alcohol or tobacco;
        •   906 high school students dropped out of school last year before completing high school.
        •   5,728 students were suspended in the 2002-2003 school year—1,541 students more than
            once. 46 percent of the suspensions were for threats or fighting;
        •   There were 173 births to adolescent mothers in 2002; the adolescent birth rate for all women
            ages 15 to 19 was 17.3 per 1,000 women in 2002—the rate for Hispanic adolescents was 61.5
            per 1,000 women;
        •   3,305 juvenile arrests in fiscal year 2003; and
        •   The intake rate for DJS was 43.6 per 1,000 youth ages 10 to 17 in FY2002—the rate was
            104.6 for African Americans.

        See Appendix B for more data.

d. Early and Persistent Disruptive and Delinquent Behavior

        OJJDP defines persistent disruptive behavior as youth who are at risk of offending, exhibiting
such behaviors as truancy, incorrigibility, serious aggression, and violation of the rights and property of
others. Serious delinquents have committed one or more of the following: homicide, aggravated assault,
robbery, rape or serious arson (Loeber 2003).

        Youth who engage in problem behaviors chronically, are re-offenders, and are engaged in serious
and violent criminal behavior are at a high risk of gang-involvement. These youth are more likely to have
delinquent peers, one of the strongest predictors of gang membership, and are more likely to fall into the
gang lifestyle.

        Research also suggests that gang membership itself increases the likelihood and frequency of
youth to commit serious and violent crimes (Huff 1998).

        See Appendix B for more data.




Montgomery County Collaboration Council for Children, Youth and Families                                 16
e. Extreme Economic Deprivation

        The pressures of economic depravity rob a community of stable and economically secure families
and the resources to adequately nurture children. Gangs do not exclusively come from impoverished
neighborhoods, but youth who live there have greater obstacles to over come and lack access to the
opportunities that typically promote positive adolescent development These opportunities sometimes
include access to safe gathering places, recreation, leisure activities, and educational materials.

         The child poverty rate provides important information about the percentage of children whose
current circumstances make life difficult and jeopardize their future economic well-being. Low income is
statistically linked with a variety of poor outcomes for children, from low birth weight and poor nutrition
in infancy to increased chances of academic failure, emotional distress, and unwed childbirth in
adolescence (Duncan and Brooks-Gunn, 1997).

         Communities with high levels of unemployment lack the financial resources to provide for their
children and places family supports under great stress. Unemployment also fosters a sense of
hopelessness and encourages youth to search for alternative sources of income. Lack of positive role
models in a community discourages youth successes in school and individual achievements. If boys
identify with men who are detached from the workforce, they are more likely to follow in their footsteps
(Michigan State University 2004).

        A concentration of single-parent households in a community also puts the youth living there at
risk. These communities tend to have lower socio-economic status and fewer adults with sufficient time
and resources. Gang-involved youth do not necessarily come from broken or single-parent families, but
rather communities without intact families experience greater stress involved in raising children and can
contribute to an environment where youth turn to gang membership.

    •   121,931 people live at low income—47,024 people lived below the federal poverty level in 2000;
    •   77,193 males were unemployed and not part of the workforce in 2000;
    •   2,133 teens are not enrolled in school and not working in 2000;
    •   23,387 families were headed by a single parent in 2000—single-headed households typically
        have lower incomes; and
    •   Free and Reduced Meal participation is at 23.2% of the total school population—32,360; 21
        elementary schools have more than 50% of their populations participating in FARMS.

        See Appendix B for more data.

f. Linguistic and Cultural Isolation

       Researchers have found that gangs are not necessarily from minority populations and that
demographics do not explain gang membership. Rather, minority youth are at greater risk of gang
involvement and facing the other risk factors associated with gang behaviors than other youth (Esbensen
2000).

         Linguistic and cultural isolation are common for recent immigrant groups. Living in isolated
communities places youth at risk for problem behaviors because it limits their access to opportunities and
resources. If these communities fail to create strong social networks and organized system supports,
youth are at even greater risk. Youth living in such communities may suffer discrimination from the
larger social system. Gang membership may be seen as a source of identity and stability Gang-involved
youth tend to be those who feel only marginally related to their own community and to the greater
community (Kodluboy 1996).


Montgomery County Collaboration Council for Children, Youth and Families                                 17
     •    19,986 households are linguistically isolated in 2000—11,344 children 5 to 17 live in these
          households; and
     •    232,996 people were born outside the United States in 2000—23,615 were children.

          See Appendix B for more data.

Influence of Multiple Risk Factors

        Certain community-level factors make an area and its citizens vulnerable to gang membership
and gang crime. Individual factors have an equally important role to play along side the youth’s social
context. These social conditions and individual situations have not only contributed to the current state of
gangs in Montgomery County, but could very well contribute to the future growth of gang involvement
among at-risk youth.

         But a particular community and a youth’s social environment do not on their own dictate that a
youth will necessarily become involved in a gang. It is often a multiple number of factors that lead youth
to join gangs or engage in delinquent behaviors. A study of gang membership in Seattle found that youth
who joined gangs were distinguished by the presence of risk factors in their neighborhood, family, school,
peers and the individual. No single overriding risk factor exists. But the more risk factors a youth
experiences, the more likely they were to join a gang (Hill et al 2001).

         The risk factors point to vulnerabilities among individuals, families, schools, and neighborhoods.
It is important to identify where at-risk youth live. The following indicators, identified among the
community-level risk factors, were gathered from 2000 Census data and were combined to create a
Neighborhood Index of Risk. The following factors were included in the index based on the research
discussed in the sections above which outlined significant factors— “extreme economic deprivation” and
“linguistic and cultural isolation”; factors that do not on their own predict an individuals’ likelihood to
join a gang, but rather, as community-level factors cumulatively put youth at greater risk:

Neighborhood Index of Risk
                                                                                                          Montgomery
                                                                                     Threshold*
                                                                                                            County
High Percentage of Individuals with Low Income Level                                   23.8%                  14.1%
High Percentage of Detached Males (not working)                                        34.6%                  24.6%
High Percentage of Idle Teens (not in school and unemployed)                           16.1%                   5.5%
High Percentage of Single-Parent Families with Own Children                            17.7%                  10.3%
High Percentage of Linguistically Isolated Households                                  12.3%                   6.2%
High Percentage of Foreign-Born Population                                             38.5%                  26.7%
High Percentage of African-American Population                                         26.4%                  15.1%
High Percentage of Hispanic/Latino Population                                          21.8%                  11.5%

*The threshold is considered a high percentage of concentration in the census block group for the particular variable. This value
is calculated as one standard deviation above the mean. Z-scores were calculated for each block group denoting the number of
standard deviations from the mean. Z-scores were averaged to create the mapped index value.
Source: 2000 U.S. Census




Montgomery County Collaboration Council for Children, Youth and Families                                                      18
Locating Areas of Risk

         The average score for each census block group, used to create an index value, was mapped by
census block group. Neighborhoods with the highest risk are those census block groups where on average
these eight indicators were at least one standard deviation above the mean. These areas were then
referenced to a number of commonly used boundaries such as planning areas, school clusters, and police
districts, as follows:

       1) Planning Areas: These high-risk areas are present within the following planning areas (using
modified boundaries): Gaithersburg, Rockville, North Bethesda/Garrett Park, Aspen Hill,
Kensington/Wheaton, Kemp Mill/ Four Corners, Colesville/White Oak, Fairland, Silver Spring, and
Takoma Park.

        2) MCPS School Clusters: The top active gangs are present in every school cluster with the
exception of Poolesville, Sherwood and Whitman. The highest risk areas are concentrated in
Gaithersburg, Johnson, Wheaton, Kennedy, Einstein and Blair.

        3) Montgomery County Police Districts: Every police district has at least one of the top active
gangs, with MS-13 present in every district and high risk areas are present in every district.

       4) Municipalities: High risk areas are present in Gaithersburg, Rockville, and Takoma Park
municipalities; the county’s most populous places.

See Appendix C for maps of high risk neighborhoods and Appendix D for overlay of high risk
neighborhoods and top active gangs with reference boundaries.

         A similar map could also be made to create a Youth Index of Risk if data was made available at a
neighborhood level on academic performance, truancy, dropouts, and suspensions to include along with
juvenile arrests and teen pregnancy. The Collaboration Council’s Data Collaborative has this as one of
its goals.

                                          9. Protective Factors

         But not all youth exposed to risk factors outlined above engage in problem behaviors or ever
become part of a gang. Because of the presence of protective factors, these youth are buffered from the
effects of various risk factors. Protective factors balance out and can sometimes negate the risk factors.
The Montgomery County Juvenile Justice Comprehensive Plan grouped the protective factors into the
following categories:

        •   Healthy beliefs and clear standards for behavior in the family, school and community;
        •   Bonding with families, positive peer groups, schools and communities; and
        •   Characteristics inherent in the individual such as resilient temperament and positive social
            orientation. (DHHS, et.al. 1999).

         Some of the specific protective factors concerning gangs are simply the converse of the described
risk factors, such as early academic achievement and strong families. But in addition to these the research
discussed in an OJJDP report, “Youth Gang Programs and Strategies,” found that other protective factors
against gang involvement exist within an individual’s mental and social development (Howell 2000).
Building up a youth’s positive self-image, reducing feelings of alienation, creating constructive
perceptions around school are all more likely to prevent gang involvement than just reducing risk factors
on their own.


Montgomery County Collaboration Council for Children, Youth and Families                                     19
         Another gap in data is the ability to measure the positive presence of these protective factors—not
just the absence of risky behaviors. Asset-based data measures link the environmental conditions and the
array of effective services minimally required for the positive impact of these protective factors. A set of
indicators are needed to measure “Communities that support family life”—Governor’s Office for
Children, Youth and Families, a statewide outcome.


                 10. Summary of Key Findings: Relationship to the Continuum

      Continuum                                            Findings
 Prevention                 General Population
                               • Youth in Montgomery County from birth through high school—
 Targets:
                                   161,585 school-aged children in 2000;
    •   general                • Households with children—120,843 in 2000.
        population (all
        youth and their     Poverty/Unemployment
        families) or           • 121,931 people live at low income—47,024 people lived below the
    •   a segment of the            federal poverty level in 2000;
        population that        • 77,193 males were unemployed and not part of the workforce in
        shares the same             2000.
        general risks; or      • 2,133 teens are not enrolled in school and not working in 2000;
    •   a specific             • 23,387 families were headed by a single parent in 2000—single-
        subgroup of the             headed households typically have lower incomes;
        general                • Free and Reduced Meal participation is at 23.2% of the total school
        population                  population—32,360; 21 elementary schools have more than 50% of
        whose risk is               their populations participating in FARMS.
        greater.

 Prevention                 Cultural/linguistic Isolation
                                • 19,986 households are linguistically isolated in 2000—11,344
                                    children 5 to 17 live in these households;
                                • 232,996 people were born outside the United States in 2000—
                                    23,615 were children;
                                • An unidentified number of residents are undocumented residents and
                                    therefore try to remain invisible, not seeking needed services.


                            Using an indexing calculation combining several general risk factors, high
                            risk areas exist within the planning areas of Gaithersburg, Rockville, North
                            Bethesda/Garrett Park, Aspen Hill, Kensington/Wheaton, Kemp Mill/ Four
                            Corners, Colesville/White Oak, Fairland, Silver Spring, and Takoma Park.
                            See maps in Appendix D for reference maps related to school clusters, police
                            districts and municipalities.


 Intervention               Individual
                               • 7.8 percent of 8 graders and 18.9 percent of 10 graders admitted to
                                                  th                               th

 Targets individuals               using some type of drug other than alcohol or tobacco in 2002
 who                           • 173 births to adolescent mothers in 2002
   • have already
       exhibited those

Montgomery County Collaboration Council for Children, Youth and Families                                 20
      Continuum                                            Findings
       risk factors         Family
       which predict          • Children have been present in nearly half of all reported cases of
       gang                       domestic violence
       involvement;           • 1,213 indicated or unsubstantiated incidences of child abuse and
    • whose living                neglect in 2003
       conditions put
       them notably at      School
                              • 2,466 5 graders scored only basic on reading and 2,736 scored basic
                                          th
       risk (older
       sibling is gang            on math—more than half were student receiving free and reduced
       involved, etc.);           price meals and two thirds were either African American or Hispanic
       or                         in the 2003-2004 school year
    • have joined a           • 906 high school students dropped out of school last year before
       gang but are not           completing high school
       involved in            • 5,728 students were suspended in the 2002-2003 school year—1,541
       criminal                   students more than once
       activities.            • 2,142 students were absent from school for more than 20 days in the
                                  2002-2003 school year—more than half were student receiving free
                                  and reduced price meals

                            Community
                              • 209 gangs—number of known individuals has gown
                              • Distribution of gang activity throughout the county (Appendix A)
                              • 3,305 juvenile arrests in fiscal year 2003
                              • 4,045 juvenile cases were referred to DJS in fiscal year 2003

                            At this time, unduplicated numbers are not available to identify how many
                            resources are needed to reduce risk, build resiliency and deter gang-related
                            criminal activity. Address-level data is also not available to determine areas
                            of high concentration and create an area youth risk index.


 Suppression                   •   Gang members involved in criminal activity
                               •   Juvenile crime gangs-related and gang-involved
 Targets individuals           •   Prosecutions
 who are gang members          •   Adjudications
 and suspected of
 criminal activity;          All high risk neighborhoods identified above in prevention and have active
 serious and violent         gang presence tied to criminal activity, see maps in Appendix D.
 offenders




Montgomery County Collaboration Council for Children, Youth and Families                                     21
                                               References

Community Action Board of Montgomery County (CAB). The Montgomery County Report on the Self-
     sufficiency Standard. Montgomery County, MD: April 2003.

Comprehensive Strategy Task Force (CST). Report of the Comprehensive Strategy Task Force on
      Serious, Violent and Chronic Juvenile Offenders. Jacksonville, Florida. May 1998.

Duncan, Greg and Jeanne Brooks-Gunn, eds. Consequences of Growing Up Poor. New York: Russell
       Sage Press. 1997.

Esbensen, Finn-Aage. “Preventing Adolescent Gang Involvement,” Juvenile Justice Bulletin. OJJDP:
       Washington, DC. September 2000.

Egley, Jr., Arlen and Aline K. Major. “Highlights of the 2002 National Youth Gang Survey,” OJJDP
        Fact Sheet. OJJDP: Washington, DC. April 2004.

Hill, Karl G., Christina Lui, and J. David Hawkins. “Early Precursors of Gang Membership: A Study of
        Seattle Youth,” OJJDP Youth Gang Series. OJJDP: Washington, DC. December 2001.

Howell, James C. Youth Gang Programs and Strategies. OJJDP: Washington, DC. August 2000.

Howell, James C. and James P. Lynch. “Youth Gangs in Schools,” OJJDP Juvenile Justice Bulletin.
       OJJDP: Washington, DC. August 2000.

Huff, C. Ronald. “Comparing the Criminal Behavior of Youth Gangs and At-Risk Youths,” National
        Institute of Justice Research in Brief. Washington, DC. October 1998.

Identity. Summary of Relevant Findings from Identity’s Needs Assessments Regarding Risk and
         Protective Factors in the Lives of Montgomery County Latino Youth. Presented to Prevention
         Subcommittee Montgomery County Gang Prevention Task Force. April 2004.

Kodluboy, Donald W. “Basic Issues for Educators,” National Alliance of Gang Investigators Association.
       Downloaded at http://www.nagia.org/asian_youth_gangs1.htm. 1996.

Loeber, Rolf, David P. Farrington, and David Petechuk. “Child Delinquency: Early Intervention and
        Prevention,” Child Delinquency Bulletin Series. OJJDP: Washington, DC. May 2003.

Maryland State Department of Education. 2004 Maryland State Report Card. 2004

Maryland State Department of Education. Maryland Adolescent Survey. 2002

Maryland State Department of Education. Suspension, Expulsions, and Health Related Exclusions
       Maryland Public Schools 2002-2003. November 2003.

Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DHMH). Maryland Vital Statistics Annual Reports
       1995 to 2002.

Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DHMH). Data released to Maryland’s Local
       Management Boards for Youth Strategies Consolidated Grant. March 2004.

Maryland Department of Human Resources (DHR). DHR Fact Pack 2002.

Montgomery County Collaboration Council for Children, Youth and Families                              22
Maryland Department of Juvenile Services (DJS), Annual Statistical Reports Fiscal Year 1996 to 2003.

Maryland-National Capital Park & Planning Commission (M-NCPPC). 2003 Census Update Survey.
       Montgomery County Planning Department. November 2003.

Michigan State University. The Community Assessment Tool. Violence and Intentional Injury Prevention
       Program. Downloaded at http://data.vip.msu.edu/. 2004.

Montgomery County Comprehensive Planning Team. The Montgomery County Comprehensive Strategy
      for Serious, Vioent and Chronic Juvenile Offenders. July 1999.

Montgomery County Prevention and Intervention Joint Subcommittee Meeting. Subcommittees of
      Montgomery County Gang Prevention Task Force. Meeting held at Carver Educational Services
      Center, 1:30 to 3:30 on May 19, 2004.

Montgomery County Police Department, Educational Facility Officers. Data analysis reports from crime
      analyst. 2004.

Montgomery County Police Department, Family Crimes Division. Data analysis reports from crime
      analyst. 2004.

Montgomery County Police Department, Gang Intelligence Database. Data analysis from crime analyst.
      2004.

Montgomery County Public Schools (MCPS). 2003-2004 Student Enrollment Data. December 31, 2003.

Montgomery County Public Schools (MCPS), Office of School Safety and Security. Data analysis report
      from director. 2004.

Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP). OJJDP Comprehensive Gang Model: A
        Guide to Assessing Your Community’s Youth Gang Problem. Washington, DC. June 2002.

Spergel, Irving et. al. Gang Suppression and Intervention: Problem and Response. Chicago. October
        1994.

United States Census Bureau. 2000 U. S. Census.

United States Census Bureau. National and State Population Estimates and Estimated Components of
        “Change. Washington, DC: December 2003. Downloaded at
        http://eire.census.gov/popest/estimates_dataset.php.




Montgomery County Collaboration Council for Children, Youth and Families                               23
                                                                      Appendix A




Montgomery County Collaboration Council for Children, Youth and Families           24
                                                    Appendix B
                                  Measuring of Precursors to Gang Involvement

Family Management Problems and Family Conflict

Domestic Violence Reported to Montgomery County Police Department, FY2003
Reported Cases of Domestic Violence                     1,557     1.7 per 1,000 population
Reported events with children present                      674    43.3% of all cases
District 1 reported cases                                  196
District 2 reported cases                                   95
District 3 reported cases                                  316
District 4 reported cases                                  275
District 5 reported cases                                  303
District 6 reported cases                                  372

Source: Family Crimes Division, Montgomery County Police Department


Montgomery County                                                Montgomery County
Chld Abuse and Neglect Rate, 2000 to 2003                        Types of Abuse and Neglect Cases, 2003
(rate per 1000 children)                                         (percent of indicated/unsubstantiated cases)
                                       Investigations
   14       12.7            12.6                                     Physical                          35.4
                                        11.6        11.3              Abuse                           (429)
   12
                                                                                                                 49.5
   10                                                                 Neglect
                                                                                                                (600)
    8                  Indicated or Unsubstantiated                    Sexual                  14.3
                                                                       Abuse                  (174)
    6
                            6.2                                        Mental
    4        5.6                                    5.2                Abuse
                                                                                    0.7 (8)
                                         4.9
    2                                                                 Mental
                                                                      Neglect
                                                                                    0.1 (1)
    0
            2000            2001        2002        2003                        0              20     40            60



    Number of Investigations, 2003              2,651
    Number Indicated or Unsubstantiated         1,213

Source: Maryland Department of Human Resources




Montgomery County Collaboration Council for Children, Youth and Families                                                 25
  Early Academic Failure Beginning in Elementary School

  Percent of Montgomery County Public Students in 5th Grade Scoring Proficient in Reading, 2003-2004

100
                             89.8
                                                      85.1
                                                                       80.5
 80     76.1

                                           60
                                                                                       56.4
 60                                                                                                52.7
                                                                                                                 46.4

 40                                                                                                                            33.1


 20


  0
      All Children         White (non-    African   Asian/Pacific      American       Hispanic   Free/Reduced    Special    Limited English
                            Hispanic)    American     Islander      Indian/ Alaskan                  Meals      Education     Proficiency
                                                                         Native



      Number of 5th Graders Scoring Basic in Reading, 2003-2004
                           White
        All                 (non-        African                      Amer.                                     Spec.
      Children            Hispanic)      Amer.        Asian           Indian          Hispanic   FARMS           Ed           LEP
       2,466                 470           931         211                7             847       1,371          723           477

  Percent of Montgomery County Public Students in 5th Grade Scoring Proficient in Math, 2003-2004

100
                             87.5                     88.2
                                                                       77.8
 80     73.5


 60                                      52.4                                           55
                                                                                                   49.3
                                                                                                                 39.2          41.2
 40


 20

  0
      All Children         White (non-    African   Asian/Pacific      American       Hispanic   Free/Reduced    Special    Limited English
                            Hispanic)    American     Islander      Indian/ Alaskan                  Meals      Education     Proficiency
                                                                         Native



      Number Scoring Basic in Math, 2003-2004
                           White
        All                 (non-        African                      Amer.                                      Spec.
      Children            Hispanic)      Amer.        Asian           Indian          Hispanic     FARMS          Ed           LEP
       2,736                 573         1,107         168                8             876          1,472       819           427

  Source: Maryland State Department of Education




  Montgomery County Collaboration Council for Children, Youth and Families                                                            26
     Early Initiation of Problem Behaviors
     Early and Persistent Disruptive and Delinquent Behavior

     Percent of Montgomery County Students Reporting Substance Use in the Last 30 Days , 2002
                                                           Grade 6                       Grade 8     Grade 10               Grade 12
     Cigarettes                                                 0.2                        2.4         9.1                        16.6
     Beer or Wine                                                2                         7.7         27.3                       36
     Liquor                                                     0.6                        4.4          24                        30.7
     Binge Drinking                                             0.6                        3.6         18.5                       25.3
     Marijuana                                                  0.7                        2.6          14                        23.6
     Any form of alcohol                                         2                         8.6         30.9                       39.1
     Any drug other than alcohol or tobacco                     2.9                        7.8         18.9                       26.9

     Source: Maryland State Department of Education



     Percent of Montgomery County Public School Students in Grades 9-12 Who Dropout of School, 2002-2003


25

20

15

10
                                                                          5.04
 5                                           2.83                                         3.71
         2.01                                                                                             2.5                          2.13
                               1.37                      1.05                                                          0.23
 0
       All Children          White (non-     African   Asian/Pacific      American        Hispanic     Free/Reduced    Special     Limited English
                              Hispanic)     American     Islander      Indian/ Alaskan                     Meals      Education      Proficiency
                                                                            Native




      Number of Dropouts, 2002-2003
                            White
         All                 (non-         African                        Amer.                                       Spec.
       Children            Hispanic)       Amer.        Asian             Indian          Hispanic     FARMS           Ed              LEP
        906                  298            276            67                 6             259           133          123               5

     Source: Maryland State Department of Education




     Montgomery County Collaboration Council for Children, Youth and Families                                                                27
                                                      Montgomery County
Montgomery County Public School Students Suspended by
                                                      Type of Suspension Offenses, 2002-2003
Race and Ethnicity, 2002-2003
                                                      (percent of public school students)

                                                                       Attendance      5.7%
                                                                       Dangerous
                                                                       Substances
                                                                                       6.4%
          Hispanic
            22%                                                         Weapons       3.4%

                                                                 Threats/ Fighting                         46.1%
                                                  African
                                                 American       Arson/ Explosives     1.5%
       Asian                                       45%
        5%                                                           Sex Offenses     2.3%

                                                                  Insubordination             21.1%

                                                                            Other           13.4%
               White
               28%                                                               0%         20%     40%      60%     80%   100%


 Total Number Suspended, 2002-2003                      5,728     Types of Suspensions, 2002-2003
  White, non-Hispanic                                   1,590       Attendance                                          476
  African American, n-H                                 2,579       Dangerous Substances                                545
  Asian/Pacific Islander, n-H                             275       Weapons                                             281
  American Indian/Alaskan Native, n-H                      24       Threats/Fighting                                  3,857
  Hispanic                                              1,260       Arson/Esplosives                                    125
                                                                    Sex Offenses                                        193
                                                                    Insubordination                                   1,764

Source: Maryland State Department of Education



Adolescent Birth Rate in Montgomery County, 1995 to 2002
(births per 1,000 women ages 15 to19)
 70
                       TOTAL
 60                    White
                       African American
 50                    Hispanic

 40

 30

 20

 10

  0
               1995            1996       1997         1998     1999                 2000           2001           2002

Source: Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene




Montgomery County Collaboration Council for Children, Youth and Families                                                          28
Juvenile Arrests in Montgomery County, FY2000 to FY2003

 1600
                White
 1400                                                                                1,374
                African American
 1200
                Hispanic
                Asian                                                                1,163
 1000

  800

  600

  400                                                                                415

  200
                                                                                     83
    0
                FY2000                     FY2001                       FY2002   FY2003


Source: Montgomery County Police Department, Family Services Division



Top Offenses Among Youth Ages 10 to 13, FY2003
Assault and Battery                                       158
Theft (includes shoplifting)                              111
Weapons                                                    56
Burglary                                                   23
Sex Assault                                                23
Child Abuse                                                20
Drugs                                                      16
Auto Theft                                                 11
All Offenses (arrests and citations)                      483

Source: Montgomery County Police Department, Family Services Division




Montgomery County Collaboration Council for Children, Youth and Families                     29
     Percent (and Number) of Elementary School Students in Montgomery Coutny Absent
     More than 20 Days, 20023-2003

                       All Children                         4.1 (2,142)


              White (non-Hispanic)                       3.2 (758)
                  African American                                    5.9 (651)
              Asian/Pacific Islander              2.1 (155)
 American Indian/ Alaskan Native                      2.4 (4)
                           Hispanic                                   5.8 (574)


               Free/Reduced Meals                                               7.8 (1,124)
                 Special Education                                         39.2 (440)
      Limited English Proficiency                                   5.2 (215)

                                       0                        5                     10              15           20                25
     Source: Maryland State Department of Education



     Department of Juvenile Services Intake Rate in Montgomery County,FY 1996 to FY2002
     (rate per 1000 youth ages 10 to 17)
       120
                                       Total
                                                                                                                            104.6
       100                             Black
                                       White
        80
                                       Other

        60


        40
                                                                                                                            43.6
                                                                                                                            40

        20                                                                                                                  23.1


          0
                       1996                    1997                 1998            1999      2000         2001          2002


Total Number of Cases Referred to DJS, FY1996 to FY2002
                1996          1997         1998         1999                                  2000         2001         2002
Total           5,121         4,374        4,867        3,951                                 4,213        3,450        4,202
Black                                                                                         1,912        1,593        1,850
White                                                                                         1,697        1,276        1,660
Other                                                                                          604          581          692

     Note: DJS has historically only collected data around race among three categories: “Black”, “White” and “Other”, with no
     category for Hispanic/Latino origin.
     Source: Maryland Department of Juvenile Services




     Montgomery County Collaboration Council for Children, Youth and Families                                                       30
 Extreme Economic Deprivation


 Poverty Status, 2000
Population Living Below Poverty                        47,024   5.4% of total population
Children Under 18 Living Below Poverty                 13,516   6.5% of child population under 18
 Children Ages 5 to 17                                  9,818   6.1% of child population ages 5 to 17



 Low Income (Below 200% of poverty level), 2000
Population Living at Low Income                       121,931   14.1% of total population
Children Under 18 Living at Low Income                 37,790   17.3% of child population under 18
 Children Ages 5 to 17                                 27,117   17.0% of child population ages 5 to 17


 Numbers of Children Living in Low Income Families, 2000


                    Low Income                                                                           37,790

    Reduced Price Meals Eligible                                                                33,628

     Free Meals Program Eligible                                    20,077

           Near + Below Poverty                                   19,162

                  Below Poverty                        13,516

                Extreme Poverty          6,140

                                   0         10,000             20,000               30,000              40,000

 Source: 2000 U. S. Census




 Montgomery County Collaboration Council for Children, Youth and Families                                     31
Detached Males, 2000
Civilian Males, Not Employed and Not Part of Workforce            77,193   24.6% all civilian males
 White alone                                                      49,479   23.7%
 Black alone                                                      11,250   26.8%
 American Indian & Alaskan Native alone                              333   33.2%
 Asian alone                                                       8,885   24.7%
 Native Hawaiian & Pacific Islanders alone                            20   9.3%
 Some Other Race alone                                             4,629   29%
 Two or More Races                                                 2,597   26.9%


 Hispanic or Latino                                               10,269   28.8%

Source: 2000 U. S. Census


Idle Teens Ages 16 to 19, 2000
Teens 16 to 19 not enrolled in school and not working              2,133   5.5% all teens
 White, non-Hispanic                                                 656   3.9%
 African American                                                    602   11.0%
 Hispanic or Latino                                                  375   13.3%

Source: 2000 U. S. Census



Single-Headed Famlies, 2000
Single-Headed Families                           43,664   19.3 % of all families
 Single-headed Famlies with Own Children         23,387   10.3% of all families with children
  Female-headed Famlies with Children            18,623
  Male-headed Famlies with Children               4,764

Source: 2000 U. S. Census




Montgomery County Collaboration Council for Children, Youth and Families                              32
Linguistic and Cultural Isolation


Linguistically Isolated Households in Montgomery County, 2000
(number of households where all members 14 years and over have some difficulty speaking English)

Linguistically Isolated Households                           19,986         6.2% of all households

    Spanish                                                    7,523
    Other Indo-European languages                              4,461
    Asian and Pacific Island languages                         7,141
    Other languages                                             861


Children in Linguistically Isolated Households in Montgomery County, 2000
(number of children living in households where all members 14 years and over have some difficulty speaking
English)

Children Ages 5 to 17 Years Living in Isolated Households                                            11,344

    Speak only English                                                                                 625
    Speak Spanish                                                                                     5,299
    Speak other Indo-European languages                                                               1,518
    Speak Asian and Pacific Island languages                                                          3,446
    Speak other languages                                                                              456

Source: 2000 U. S. Census



Top Languages Spoken Amoung Children Ages 5 to 17 Years in Montgomery County, 2000
(percent of population ages 5 to 17)

Speak only English                                               112,094                   69.8%
Spanish or Spanish Creole                                          21,441                  13.3%
Chinese                                                             4,377                   2.7%
French (incl. Patois, Cajun)                                        2,701                   1.7%
Korean                                                              2,555                   1.6%
African languages (not specified)                                   1,934                   1.2%
Persian                                                             1,541                   1.0%
Vietnamese                                                          1,438                   0.9%
Russian                                                             1,045                   0.7%

Source: 2000 U.S. Census




Montgomery County Collaboration Council for Children, Youth and Families                                      33
Foreign-born population in Montgomery County, 2000
Total Foreign-born Population                                  232,996     26.7% of total population
    Foreign-born Population Under 18 Years                      23,615

Source: 2000 U. S. Census




Montgomery County Collaboration Council for Children, Youth and Families                               34
                                                                           Appendix C




Montgomery County Collaboration Council for Children, Youth and Families                35
                                                                    Appendix D




Montgomery County Collaboration Council for Children, Youth and Families         36
Montgomery County Collaboration Council for Children, Youth and Families   37
Montgomery County Collaboration Council for Children, Youth and Families   38
Montgomery County Collaboration Council for Children, Youth and Families   39

								
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