BRIEFS: CRIME; TAKING AIM AT GANGS
Published: October 9, 2005
Acting Gov. Richard J. Codey unveiled steps last Tuesday aimed at reducing gang violence, including the appointment of 14 people to the Gang Land Security Task Force and the creation of a new advisory panel to study how street gangs prosper. Appearing at a Newark church, Mr. Codey announced the initiatives amid reports that gang activity is increasing throughout the state. His efforts follow community-based prevention programs sponsored by the attorney general's Office. A state police survey to gauge the prevalence of street gangs released in June showed that nearly 17,000 New Jersey youths belong to one of 700 gangs, an increase of up to 10,000 from a more-limited survey completed in 2001. Nearly one murder in five in New Jersey involves a gang member, the authorities estimate. Tuesday's appointees to the task force included people in law enforcement, doctors, preachers and social services professionals. They round out a 26-member group.
“Nobody's perfect. We're all just one step up from the beasts and one step down from the angels.”