The New York Times has a follow-up to its earlier story on gang violence in Los Angeles.
With a reporter and photographer allowed to accompany him for several hours of his nearly 12-hour shift, Officer Robbins offered a primer on the 204th Street gang.Elsewhere, David Zahniser had a very interesting cover story in the L.A. Weekly about tactics to prevent murder in Los Angeles, and an equally interesting response to the Advancement Project report on gangs.
He knows its history, how it broke long ago from Tortilla Flats, now a bitter rival.
He knows its numbers: more than 100 members, with about 30 hard-core devotees, relatively small for a Los Angeles gang, some of which number into the thousands.
He knows that it earns money dealing marijuana and methamphetamine, but that the income is not enough for several members, who have legitimate day jobs.
He knows that members of 204th Street dislike blacks, who are the newer arrivals in the neighborhood, and he has learned from members that their disdain arises from racial hatred and rivalry with black gang members they accuse of dealing drugs on their turf.