Gang members speak | TahoeDailyTribune.com
YOUR AD HERE »

Gang members speak

Cory Fisher

Interviews with South Lake Tahoe teens – some who say they are in gangs, recently out, or know gang members talk about why young people opt to join:

Most elected not to use their own names:

Hector: “For me it was like a second family. I was never alone – I always had someone there. My mother has to work – she barely even spends time with us. It’s just the way life goes.”

The Stranger: “I was in a gang in Carson City – I wasn’t in my own country and I wanted to be with people of my own race. I was taken in by a family associated with a gang, so I joined out of loyalty. I didn’t have anyone to support me – I didn’t have anyone, that’s why I joined a gang.”

Brenda: “It’s macho for the younger boys, and a lot of kids have problems with their families. The movies and the arcades at the casinos are the only things to do here – then the cops wonder why we hang out in groups and do nothing.

David: “It’s about respect. If someone bothers you over and over you have to find a way to defend yourself. You need protection. If someone disrespects you in front of a crowd, you have to do something. Sometimes it even escalates if you walk away.”

James: “We don’t get a lot of respect from people in authority, so it makes it hard to respect them. And some girls like gang members, even if they’re not in a girl’s gang.”

Sabina: “We respect older people, but a lot of them don’t know how to respect us. There’s no place for teens to go – we get kicked out of most places by 10 o’clock.”


Support Local Journalism

Support Local Journalism

Readers around the Lake Tahoe Basin and beyond make the Tahoe Tribune's work possible. Your financial contribution supports our efforts to deliver quality, locally relevant journalism.

Now more than ever, your support is critical to help us keep our community informed about the evolving coronavirus pandemic and the impact it is having locally. Every contribution, however large or small, will make a difference.

Your donation will help us continue to cover COVID-19 and our other vital local news.

For tax deductible donations, click here.

Start a dialogue, stay on topic and be civil.
If you don't follow the rules, your comment may be deleted.

User Legend: iconModerator iconTrusted User