Relatively Small Social Networks Responsible for Large Portion of Shootings in Chicago, New York City, According to Study, Police

can you count?Warriors: The Original Motion Picture SoundtrackA pair of stories touch on similar issues of gun violence in New York City and Chicago. First, a claim from the New York Police Department (NYPD) about who is responsible for approximately 40 percent of shootings in the Big Apple, via the AP:

There are more than 300 of them in New York — violent crews of dozens of 12- to 20-year-olds with names such as Very Crispy Gangsters, True Money Gang and Cash Bama Bullies.

Police say these groups, clustered around a particular block or housing project, are responsible for about 40 percent of the city's shootings, with most of that violence stemming from the smallest of disses on the street, Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.

"It's like belonging to an evil fraternity," said Inspector Kevin Catalina, commander of the New York Police Department's gang division. "A lot of it is driven by nothing: A dispute over a girl or a wrong look or a perceived slight."

The trend of smaller, younger crews has also been seen in Chicago and Northeast cities over the last few years as police have cracked down on bigger, more traditional gangs, experts said. While the Bloods, Crips and Latin Kings still exist, operating such money-making schemes as drug dealing, their members are usually older and understand the timeworn mantra of organized crime: violence is bad for business.

For years police in New York City and other cities in the Northeast and around the country have specifically targeted organized, or "traditional," gangs like the Bloods and Crips. It shouldn't be surprising that those efforts have led to the replacement of these gangs by even more violent successors. Law enforcement also understands violence is bad for business. It's axiomatic for the drug war, where drug use is combatted, literally, by introducing violence into the otherwise non-violent acts of buying, selling, and using certain substances.

Meanwhile, a research study out of Yale University follows up on previous research about the small homicidal social networks in Chicago by extending it to non-fatal shootings. Chicago Magazine explains:

Papachristos constructs a social network—not a virtual one in the Facebook sense, but a real one of social connections between people—by looking at arrestees who have been arrested together. That turns out to be a lot of people in raw numbers, almost 170,000 people with a "co-offending tie" to one another, with an average age of 25.7 years, 78.6 percent male and 69.5 percent black. It's also a large percentage of all the individuals arrested: 40 percent of all the individuals arrested during that period.

Within the entire group, the largest component of that whole co-offender group has 107,740 people.

Within the timeframe—from 2006 to 2010—70 percent of all shootings in Chicago, or about 7,500 out of over 10,000, are contained within all the co-offending networks. And 89 percent of those shootings are within the largest component.

The study's results would suggest that assaulting the gun rights of the broader communities in Chicago, New York City, or the rest of the country is a nonsensical non-solution to gun violence. And by the NYPD's own assertions, neither is "stop and frisk" a solution. The numbers of "crews" the NYPD estimates works out to between 7,000 and 14,000 youths (depending on how many dozen are in any crew) responsible for 40 percent of shootings. It's a tiny subset not only of the total population of New York City but of any demographic group the NYPD might decide to profile.

Neither of those rights-violating approaches, anti-gun legislation or stop and frisk, make sense to curb violence, but they are easier than the kind of police work (like walking beats) or community work (like wider access to gun rights) that could actually put a damp on gun violence.

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  • mr simple||

    This is obviously caused by the hippity hop music and gangster pants sagging.
    /O'Reilly

  • The Other Kevin||

    So people in gangs like to shoot at other people in gangs, and a few bad apples spoil the bunch. Color me shocked.

  • ||

    "It's like belonging to an evil fraternity,"

    Oh no not the Alpha Betas!

  • Mint Berry Crunch||

    Yeah, you would like that rape culture promoting movie. The panty raid scene? Lewis tricking Betty into sex? It's more misogynist than Game of Thrones!

  • MJGreen||

    ROBOT HOUSE!!!

  • Lord Humungus||

    You know who else belonged to a relatively small social network that caused a large number of shootings?

  • DEATFBIRSECIA||

    Lee Boyd Malvo?

  • Sudden||

    Daryll Gates?

  • DEATFBIRSECIA||

    David Fincher? Get it? Shooting? Social Network? I'm dying here! Play me out Johnnie...

  • Ayn Random Variation||

    Janet Reno?

  • derpules||

    Dick Cheney?

  • Paul.||

    Wyatt Earp?

  • BuSab Agent||

    NYPD?

  • ||

    "...assaulting the gun rights of the broader communities in Chicago, New York City, or the rest of the country is a nonsensical non-solution to gun violence. "

    It was never meant to be a solution to gun violence. That is not the purpose of it.

  • Hugh Akston||

    I wonder what percentage of shootings the gangs that call themselves the NYPD and CPD are responsible for.

  • Anon E. Mouse||

    Not coincidentally, the primary offenders are young black male gang-members. If "stop and frisk" isn't the answer, perhaps using RICO statutes to prosecute gang members is.

  • Jordan||

    No. Stop and Frisk and RICO are both authoritarian abominations.

  • Anon E. Mouse||

    Not quite as abominable as not being able to walk down the street without getting shot and rolled by a hoodlum.

  • Paul.||

    Carry a gun.

  • optimusratiostultum||

    yeah then get arrested and tossed in jail with all the hoods anyway

  • Paul.||

    Sorry, I was speaking in generalities- like as if one was living anywhere but New York. My B.

  • Agammamon||

    You mean you'd prefer to get shot and rolled by the cops themselves?

  • DEATFBIRSECIA||

    OT, kinda proud of myself. I've been getting this pesky contribution spam from Missouri Democrats, and today I'd finally had enough. Here's what I replied:

    OK, let me see if I’ve got this right. You want me to support a party whose national Head, the Democratic President of the United States, freely spies on his own people without warrants, murders American citizens abroad with airborne robots without any semblance of due process, and has doubled down on the oppressive and barbaric perpetual-war tactics of his predecessor? Not to mention fighting tooth-and-nail to keep the disastrous Drug War going full steam? Oh, and has deported more people than any other President in history? Oh, and who has prosecuted more whistle-blowers for telling the truth than all other Presidents combined?

    Uh, no thanks, I’ll vote Libertarian from here on out. So should you.

    And please don’t send me any more of this useless team-mentality propaganda.

    Thanks But No Thanks,

  • DEATFBIRSECIA||

    Not that they're gonna fucking read it...

  • Jordan||

    You should have done this:

    Find a shoebox, or a storage bin, or any cardboard box you have laying around. Fill it up with bricks, big blocks of iron, or maybe cement. Tape the box up with everyday packaging tape. Use a junkmail's postage-paid envelope and tape it neatly to the top cover of the box. NEATLY. And mail it off. Envelope revenge!

    A few days later, your package shows up at the junk mailer's location, and they have to pay for every cent of delivery. Once the cost outweighs the benefit, they will stop sending out direct mail marketing material. And that is my goal.
  • DEATFBIRSECIA||

    Nice! This was electronic spam, but excellent idea for the carbon-based kind.

  • derpules||

    GENIUS

  • PapayaSF||

    One trick is to donate $1. You will be on their (and everyone's) list forever, but they'll spend much more than a dollar mailing you things.

  • Acosmist||

    The deportation thing is a myth.

  • PapayaSF||

    This sounds like another example of the Pareto principle, even though I'm not seeing an 80/20 ratio here.

  • Tim||

    Sounds like the science is settled. The debate is over. Gun rights Deniers must be quiet.

  • The Late P Brooks||

    "It's like belonging to an evil fraternity," said Inspector Kevin Catalina, commander of the New York Police Department's gang division.

    I, naturally, read this as Inspector Catalina bragging about the perks of being a cop. The biggest, baddest, most evilest fraternity gang of all.

  • Loki||

    For years police in New York City and other cities in the Northeast and around the country have specifically targeted organized, or "traditional," gangs like the Bloods and Crips. It shouldn't be surprising that those efforts have led to the replacement of these gangs by even more violent successors. Law enforcement also understands violence is bad for business. It's axiomatic for the drug war, where drug use is combatted, literally, by introducing violence into the otherwise non-violent acts of buying, selling, and using certain subsatnces.

    The way the above paragraph is block quoted in the original post made me think it was from the AP story. I thought maybe they had managed to write something that wasn't full derp. Got my hopes up for a second there.

  • Brett L||

    WAARRRIIOORS!! Come out and Playyay!

  • Agammamon||

    Jeezy petes man - way to quote 'Archer' wrong.

  • AlmightyJB||

    James Remar

  • waffles||

    An 18 year old kid was shot down the street from me by two kids who managed to run away. My partner remarked how the killers had to be young because no one in the game long enough to get old would be so brazen. Fucking animals.

  • AlmightyJB||

    "violent crews of dozens of 12- to 20-year-olds"

    Lord of the Flies. How did that happen I wonder?

  • LarryA||

    It's almost like... How can I put it so they'll understand...

    Ah.

    "Guns don't kill people. People kill people."

  • Saneman||

    These social networks do provide a platform for these infantile arguments to be played out on a larger scale. I work in an urban school district and what I see is frightening. There will be a fight, and it will be recorded, posted online, and commented on hundreds of times. The culture of fighting has been enhanced by the social networks because it increases the audience. Before social media, if there was a fight and 20 people were watching, well fine, maybe a few people heard about it, but now, upwards of 50% of the school can see it. High school kids are often facebook friends with most of the school. If there is a fight, within minutes kids are getting access to the video via friends or friends of friends. So, then someone doesn't like the comment someone made about how Joey got his ass kicked, so then that lends itself to more stupidity and more fights. I have seen kid's facebook feeds littered with fight after fight after fight. There is a "fight club" type atmosphere where these fights are recorded, scrutinized, and scrutinized again. It's like there is this constant chatter about the last fight and one that is going to happen next. Granted, I work with a group of students who are more apt to be directly involved in this atmosphere due to them being labeled with behavior problems, so I hear about it more than your average teacher.

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