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Monday, June 21, 2010

Prison Blood Gang

prison gangStarted in Los Angeles as a street gang in the 1960s, spread to Texas prisons in the 1980s. Besides serving the broader purpose of neighborhood protection, the Bloods street gang originally arose as an opposing force to their rivals the Crips, who had been allying with various other gangs in the 1970s and becoming more powerful. As a result, the Piru gang allied with the Denver Lanes, the LA Brims and the Lueeders Park Hustlers to become the Bloods in 1972. "Bloods" was a term that African-American fighting men called each other in the Vietnam War. The Pirus later changed their name to Bloods.

The East Coast Bloods began in 1993 in New York City. Leonard "Deadeye" MacKenzie, then 26-year-old inmate from Brooklyn living inside a Rikers Island cell, and fellow prisoner O.G. "Original Gangsta" Mack, founded the New York chapter of the United Blood Nation in 1993. Deadeye is now in his late 30s and is incarcerated in upstate New York.

By the late 1990s, New York Latin Kings leader Antonio Fernandez (AKA King Tone) aknowledged that the Bloods have begun to dominate New York's prison system, and that his own gang has abandoned criminal operations in favour of political-activism. Because of this abatement in Latin King crime, the Bloods have a stronger and larger population in jail.
* 59 bounty hunter (Dallas, TX)
* Alberta Warriors, some current hostility reported in Alberta. In 2006 a Warrior member was murdered by a Blood member in the city's Abbottsfield neighbourhood.
* Crazy Dragons, some current hostility reported in Alberta
* Crips.
* Gangster Disciples - reported rivalry in Indianapolis between the GD and the Circle City Neighborhood Bloods (now the Dub Trey Gangsters)
* Latin Kings - reported brawls have broken out between the Bloods and Latin Kings in New York state prisons. New York street rivalry is also especially prevalent. However, as mentioned above, recent events have suggested the Latin Kings have abated criminal operations in New York in favour of political aspirations.
* MS-13 - the Bloods In Long Island have reportedly been in conflicts with MS-13
* Neta Association - there have been reported fights between the Netas and the Bloods in Rikers Island penitentiary.
* Redd Alert, current hostility reported in Alberta
* Sur-13
* Trinitarios
* According to user sources, many Bloods are also rivals with many Asian gangs

Hundreds of factions or sets of the Bloods exist, some of which include:

1. 007 Bonton Bloods (Dallas,Texas)
2. 031 Bloods (Antigua & Barbuda)
3. 21st Treetop Pirus, Northside Fort Worth, Texas
4. 223 East Grand Bloods (Dallas,Texas)
5. 3rd Gate Bloods (Eastside, Fort Worth)
6. 4 Duece Killers (Blood set out of Edmonton)
7. 414 Bloods
8. 415 East Dallas Bloods (Dallas,Texas)
9. 44 Oakland Guerilla Jungle Bloods (South Dallas, Texas)
10. 51-50 Westside Skyline Pirus
11. 54st Mafia (also known as Blood Bangin' Piru, started in San Diego,CA and now covers three major cities, including:Houston,Boston,and Phoenix.
12. 5700 Arlington Park Bloods (northwest Dallas, Texas)
13. 5-9 Brims, in New York City and New Jersey, and Bristol Township
14. 59 Bloods (Shreveport, Louisiana)
15. 7 duece 4 (TRU), Hmong Bloods gang in Fresno, CA
16. 901 Bloods, (Southside Fort Worth)
17. Alley Bishops
18. Almighty Blooded Vice Lords (Vice Lord and Blood Gang connection in Indianapolis)
19. Ardwick Blood Crew, Toronto, Ontario
20. Athens Park Boys (from Avalon Boulevard to Figueroa in L.A.)
21. Baldwin Village Bloods, based in a community in southwest Los Angeles, as of late 1990s.
22. Black Star Nation
23. Block Bishops
24. Black Demon Soldiers, a subset of the Neighborhood Rollin 20s Bloods
25. Bloodstone Villains, reported in Los Angeles.
26. Bo-Gars, Montreal chapter that began in the 1980s.
27. Bounty Hunters (from the Nickerson Garden projects in L.A.)
28. Boyz Sheboygan, Eastern Wisonsin and Sheboygan
29. Brim Bloods (Six Duece Brims/62 Brims)
30. Brownsville Bloods, reported in Brookyln, NY. In 2000 two of the gang's members, Tysheen Bourne and Andre Fields, were shot and killed by police after allegedly trying to mug them.
31. Campanela Park Pirus, Compton
32. Cedar Block Piru - Compton, CA (known for the Rapper "The Game")
33. Chalktown Bloods (Toronto, Ontario)
34. Charlotte, North Carolina, where police say the Bloods make up the largest gang in the city, which holds over 70 gangs, including MS-13, Latin Kings, and Crips.
35. Circle City Neighborhood Bloods (CCNHB) (now called the Dub Trey Gangsters) - with the two c's struck out like a cent sign. CCNHB in Indianapolis are reportedly known to wear red NY Yankee hats, meaning Neighborhood Youngstaz, and Cincinnati Reds hats because of the red "C.". Stop Snitchin t-shirts identify all Bloods in Indianapolis (Dip-Set's brand shirt).
36. Code Red, a Blood-Vicelord faction
37. Concepts of War, a New York City set known among police and the public for its infatuation with violence.
38. Crazy Pyro Bloods? (this may not be correct)
39. Dark Cloud Bloods, in Vancouver, BC
40. Denver Lanes Bloods (from Imperial Highway and Century Boulevard to 109th Street in L.A.)
41. Deuce 8 4 G-Squad Bloods, 284 Goon Squad (Arlington, Texas)
42. Dip-Set - Harlem, New York City (A sub-set of the Nine Trey Gangsters in Harlem), and another Dipset located in Indianapolis.
43. Dog Posse, an early 1990s Denver-based faction reportedly known to retaliate against residents who call police
44. Doubletree Villains
45. Dub-Trey Gangsters - Formerly known as the CCNHB, Rollin 20s, and the 317 Bloods. The name represents the year 2003 when the gangs were started in Indianapolis. They are reportedly rivals with certain Gangster Disciples, but not all, and many Sureno gangs. Dub Trey Gangster Bloods are known to wear Atlanta Braves hats also for the A.
46. East Coast Damus
47. East coast Rollin 30 Limestone Piru
48. East Homicide Brim, NY, Queens
49. Eastwood Pirus (Fort Worth, Texas)
50. Flatlands, an Omaha-based gang reported in the late 1990s.
51. Forest Hill Bounty Hunter Bloods, Forest Hill, Fort Worth,Texas
52. Fox City Bloods, a Hmong gang from Appleton and Green Bay, WI
53. Fox Valley Bloods, a Hmong gang from Appleton and Green Bay, WI
54. Frontstreet Southern Blood (aka the 20 Gang (20th st Southern)) - South Phoenix, Az.
55. Fruit Town Pirus, Compton-area gangs rival to the local Nutty Block Crips
56. Gangsta Miller Bloods, a gang that allegedly operated in and around the Robert Wagner Houses, along First Avenue between 120th and 124th Streets, New York.
57. Go Hard Bloods (GHB) - Jefferson Park, Elizabeth, New Jersey
58. Gun Squad, in the New York City area
59. H.S.B. Hele st. Boyz (Kailua, HI)
60. Harvard Park Brims
61. Highland Courts Bloods - Little Rock, Arkansas
62. Hightowers, reported in the Bronx in 2000, and reported by user sources in Oneco, CT.
63. Homicide Bloods (Roywoods) (Toronto)
64. Immortal Bloods (IB) - 113 set in Wausau, Wisconsin
65. Inglewood Family Bloods
66. Jungles - South Central, LA (Known for the dead end street full of Black P Stone Bloods in the film Training Day)
67. Jungle Posse/City Bloods (Lawrence Hieghts, Toronto, Ontario)
68. Killer Gangster Bloods, a New York City gang that began in Rikers Island, and blamed for local prison violence, for instance in the Schenectady and Albany County jails.
69. King Pin Bloods (Based out of Edmonton, Alberta)
70. Kingsway Bloods - Edmonton, Alberta
71. Laos Bloods, a Laotian gang reported in Milwaukee, WI and Cleveland, OH, (especially, as the mid-1990s, West Technical High School and the West Side of Cleveland between Lorain and Detroit avenues). They are inimical to the Crips and wear the colour red.
72. Laos Boys
73. Lime Hood Bloods
74. Lueders Park
75. L95
76. Midland Heights Blood 304 (Ft.Smith, Arkansas)
77. Mob Town Pirus, in Los Angeles
78. MOD 301 (Menace of Destruction aka Method of Destruction), Hmong Blood gang
79. Nawf Side Gangstaz (aka 5x9 Blood Gang), Terrell, Tx
80. Neighborhood Piru - original Bloodset in Wichita, Kansas
81. Nine Trey Bloods
* A recent police raid on the New Jersey Nine Treys, considered by local media to be the most violent set of the Bloods, netted law enforcement at least 60 gang members and 100 arrests. Officials have claimed the chapter operates in Trenton, Newark; Paterson; Asbury Park; Atlantic City; and the Bridgeton-Millville-Vineland area.
* The Nine Treys were named after the term "1993", the year the gang was formed at New York's Rikers Island jail in an effort to protect its members from other rivals. Its hierarchy is a supposed mix between mafia and military organization, with "original gangsters," five-star generals, captains, lieutenants, and sergeants making up the leadership's "inner cabinet."
* According to user sources, the Nine Trey Bloods set is the biggest on the east coast. They are also found in Virginia.
82. Notty Head Troops (NHT)
83. Ortan Park Bloods (Scarborough, Ontario)
84. Overbrook Bloods, allegedly created in 2002 in Overbrook, a neighbourhood in the eastend of Ottawa, Ontario
85. Red Clover Gangsters
86. Red Dog Piru, reported in New Jersey
87. Retta Mob Gangsta Bloods (St.Louis)
88. Rollin 20s (now called the Dub Trey Gangsters) - a Blood Faction in Indianapolis (not to be confused with LA's R20's set), and is clicked with the CCNHB. However, neither Bloods nor Crips are reported to be very prominent in Indianapolis in comparison with the Folk and People Nation.
89. Pelham Park Bloods (Toronto, Ontario)
90. Pirus, which reportedly stands for "Powerful, Intellectual, Radical, Universal Soldiers"
91. Pueblo Bishops
92. Scott Park Killers, reported in Carson, Los Angeles
93. Sex, Money, Murder, whose alleged leader, Tommy Terrell Thompson, confessed to conspiring to assault and murder his rivals, including ordering the shooting of a wheelchair-bound man he thought cooperated with federal agents in 2003.
94. Sex Money Murder-252
95. South Side Piru - Hope, Arkansas
96. Suicidal Gangster Bloods, Hmong makeup, reported in Twin Cities, MN
97. Tay 57 Bloods, Oriental gang reported in Twin Cities, MN
98. Texas Head Busta Bloods,THB Fort Worth,Texas
99. Toyen Bloods, in Oslo, Norway
100. Trife Kids (Finch area, Toronto, Ontario)
101. True Asian Bloods
102. True Portuguese Bloods (a set based in Toronto's Little Portugal.)
103. Truman Street Bloods - Fort Worth, Texas
104. Tiny Oriental Bloods, reported in Twin Cities, MN
105. Tree Top Piru Bloods
106. Treyside Bloods, in the Bronx, NY, who based the name after the 300 block of Beekman Avenue, where they allegedly operated their drug network. 28 members were indicted in 2005.
107. Trey 17 Blood Gangsters (T17BG). Trey-17 Bloods wear red Texas Ranger hats like the Rollin 20s Bloods of LA.and Indianapolis.
108. True Portuguese Bloods (Toronto, Ontario)
109. United Blood Nation (UBN) - the UBN originated in California in the mid 1980s as a means to consolidate Bloods into one Nation of Bloods. The United Blood Nation spread to New York City prisons in the 1990s (Rikers Island), and have since been reported prominently across the eastern seaboard. These latter Bloods are also referred to as the East Coast Bloods. According to the Gaithersburg Police Department, quoted in the Baltimore Sun (18 March 2005) , East Coast-based UBN members focus on extortion and prostitution, while the L.A.-based Bloods focus on the illegal drug trade. However, the association between the UBN and the Westcoast-Bloods is often confused. Some say the United Blood Nation and the Bloods are not formally connected, and that UBN started without the permission of the westcoast Bloods, operating on its own with its own leaders and identifiers.
110. Uptown Bloods- New Orleans, LA
111. Valentine Bloods
112. Vampire Bloodstone (aka Vampire Bloods, aka Vampires) - operations in New York, New Jersey, Maryland, the East Coast, and several South and Southwestern states. The gangs emerged together basically as the Stones & Vampire Bloods.
113. Van Ness Gangster Bloods
114. Warriors
115. Westside Mob Piru
116. West Side Piru, LA, California, and Oregon
117. Westside Passadena Denver Lanes
118. Willowridge (Rotten Ridge Bloods) (Etobicoke, Ontario)

Most of the primarily Black street gang operates in prisons and on the street across much of California, but they have long since spread to other states. They have approximately 5000 members in Los Angeles alone (where they operate their national headquarters), but have set up chapters in Chicago, New York, New Jersey, Seattle-Tacoma, and Little Rock, Arkansas.

New York's Department of Corrections recently started up a Gang Intelligence Unit that identified the different Blood sets operating in New York prisons and jails, including the Gangsta Killer Bloods, the Sex Money Murder Bloods, the Concepts of War, and the Nine Trey Gangstas. New York's prison system has suffered considerable challenges from Bloods inside state prisons, with many corrections officers saying that the rise of the Bloods have resulted in making themselves feel "targeted" for the first time. According to the Village Voice's coverage, staff often get hurt intervening in conflicts, and have begun getting "popped without warning, with no rational explanation" (21 October 1997 The Village Voice).

In addition to California, signficant numbers and incidents of the Bloods have been reported in the following local, state, and federal prisons:

* Albert C. Wagner Youth Correctional Facility near Bordentown
* Auburn Correctional Facility, NY
* Bayside State Correctional Facility, New Jersey
* Burlington County Detention Center - according to users, where approximately 10-20 Bloods members attempt to control prison tiers, including televisions, telephones, and board games
* Centennial Correctional Facility, Colorado
* Cimarron Correctional Facility, Stillwater, Oklahoma
* Clinton Correctional Facility
* Coxsackie Correctional Facility
* Essex County Jail, MA
* Folsom State Prison
* Franklin Correctional Center, Bunn, North Carolina
* Great Meadow Correctional Facility in Comstock, N.Y
* Hudson County Correctional Facility
* Lansing Correctional Facility, Kansas
* Lehigh County Prison, PA. In New Jersey, as of 1996, they numbered just above 1,000.
* Limon Correctional Institution in Colorado
* Los Padrinos juvenile hall, part of the backdrop of West Side Rollin' 20s Bloods member Terrell Wright's autobiography.
* Morris County jail.
* Northern State Prison, NJ
* Northampton County Prison in Easton Pennsylvania
* Mercer County jail, New Jersey
* New Jersey State Prison (Trenton)
* Passaic County Jail, NJ
* Pelican Bay State Prison
* Rikers's Adolescent Reception and Detention Center
* San Quentin State Prison
* Southport Correctional Facility near Elmira, NY
* Sullivan Correctional Facility
* Suffolk County jail in Riverhead, NY
* Sing Sing
* Willard Correctional Facility, in Seneca County, NY
* Wyoming County Correctional Facility

The Bloods street gang is reported to have or have had in the past headquarters at:

* Allentown, Pennsylvannia
* Avon and Lyons avenues and Aldine Street in Newark, NJ
* California (multiple locations)
* Columbus, Ohio.
* Jersey City, NJ
* Essex County, NJ, supposedly one of the Nine Trey Bloods' most powerful stronghold
* Florida (multiple locations)
* Kansas City, Mo
* Miami, Florida
* New York (multiple locations)
* Shreveport, Louisiana
* Seattle-Tacoma, Washington
* Suffolk County, NY
* Trenton, NJ (Sex Money Murder)

Previous East Coast Bloods have or have had headquarters on 183rd Street and Davidson Avenue in New York City. They have chapters at Norfolk, Virginia, Harford County, Maryland, Albany, NY, Los Angeles, CA, New York City, Portland, Oregon. For a more detailed list of Blood sets and their locations, refer to the factions section above.

Because it has no written constitution, the Bloods are officially labeled a "security threat group" in prison, not a street gang per se. The gang deals in murder, conspiracy, credit card fraud, extortion, prostitution, and drug trafficking. Despite the stigma of violence, founding Blood member Omar Portee started the gang for the purpose of "brothers getting together, people getting together, fighting oppression" and not to advocate violence and killing.

According to news reports, the following members have (or have had) alleged executive connections:

* Omar Portee, aka OG Mack" or "The Big Homie", was alleged leader of the Rikers Island prison gang called the Universal Blood Nation, which then became the East Coast chapter of the Bloods street gang. He was sentenced in 2003 to 50 years in prison for murder conspiracy, credit card fraud and drug selling
* Oscar Izquierdo,Grand Master OG, who helped form the BLACK P. Stones, and founded the Egyptian Kings & Vampires. He is around 80yrs old and is reportedly alive, in retirement.
* Lemrey Andrews, alleged lieutenant
* Eric Nikwan Barnett, alleged leader of the Harford County, Maryland Bloods
* Shaidon Blake, reputed high-ranking of the Bloods in Los Angeles
* David "Duke" Allen, reported head leader of the Newark, NJ chapter, was recently the focus of a 500-strong police raid from local, state, and federal law enforcement agencies, which secured over 100 arrests. He was apparently operating as "godfather" from within Trenton State Prison in New Jersey.
* Sherman Adams (A.K.A "Sherm Da Worm"), Queens native and leader of the Rikers Island Blood Set in the 1990s, serving two life sentences. Dubbed the "Superior of All Adolescents" as a teen, based on his penchant for slicing rivals with a razor, Adams gained local notoriety in New York by broadcasting the message that the Bloods activities were aimed at representing the interests of African American inmates in jail. As a result of his flair for blade-weilding, he was assigned the corrections department's highest security rating, Code 2. Correctional officials literally treated him with kid-gloves, covering his hands with black mitts when he left his cell for visitors or for court appearances. In 1997, he was the highest ranking Blood member inside Rikers's Adolescent Reception and Detention Center.
* Tommy Terrell Thompson, leader of the Jersey City, NJ chapter
* Terrance A. Smith, reported Baltimore chapter leader
* Lakya McLean, alleged "Queen" of the Albany Bloods
* Shawn Decambre, alleged leader of the Allentown chapter of the street gang
* Paulette McCartha, alleged leader of the female "Bloodettes"
* Jamie "Dino" Reardon, alleged leader of a New Jersey chapter, arrested in 2002
* Dwayne "Poochie" Parker, alleged leader of the Tacoma, WA chapter
* Dupree "Turf" Harris, alleged leader of a Brooklyn, NY chapter
* Eric James, alleged leader of a Colorado street gang chapter in 2003
* Tony Rodgers, alleged former leader who as of 1994 runs a consulting firm known as Sidewalk University in Los Angeles
* Gary Guest, suspected leader/organizer of a New York Bloods drug operation
* Gregory Bush, alleged former leader of an Omaha chapter of the Bloods (deceased)
* Christopher Witcher, an alleged leader of a Washington-area chapter of the Bloods
* Sam Quintana, reported former leader of a Denver-based street gang chapter
* extending the index and little finger while folding the middle second and third fingers over one another is a sign that you are a member of the Brim set of the Bloods
* forming a circle with the index and thumb with middle, ring, and pinky fingers straight.
* On the left hand extend the index & pinky fingers and fold in the middle finger, ring finger inside the folded thumb & on the other hand extend the index, ring, & pinky while making a circle with middle finger & thumb then cross your wrists, right hand on the outside left to the inside is showing that you are a member of the Dub Trey Gangsters in Indianapolis.
* Anaheim Angels hats are worn by members of the Dub Trey Gangster Bloods of Indianapolis for the A meaning ''anywhere" in the city.
* Atlanta Braves caps - Dub Trey Gangsters
* East Coast Bloods wear Boston Red Sox caps because of the red B
* Miami Heat jerseys identify Miami East Coast Damus.
* Pitbull, which has been reported to identify the Bloods near Mont Claire and Adams in Los Angeles.
* RXXS, identifying the Rollin 20s, where the two Xs represent the sum of 20 in roman numerals.
* Seattle Mariner's cap - West Side Rollin Sixities wear the Seattle Mariner's cap, called an "S" Hat
* Starter jackets and Chicago Bulls jerseys
* St. Louis Cardinals hats are worn by Black P. Stones Bloods in Los Angeles, meaning L.ove.
* Texas Rangers baseball caps (West Side Rollin' 20s NeighborHood Blood)
* Crossed out sixes on the right arm.
* "MOB" for Money over Bitches
* Scars on the right shoulder normally burned by cigarettes or cigars in the shape of a dog paw.
* "000" - means OG
* "031" - love/solidarity/number code for blood
* 211 - Crip Killer
* "212" Blood code - 'let me holla at you.'
* "5 poppin 6 droppin" - Bloods are shooting and Crips are dying
* "B-one-eight-seven" means homicide, or the act of killing a rival member, such as the Crips, reflecting the police code for homicide, 187.
* "B Unit" - Blood Unit
* "Bang'Em" - Kill A Crip
* "BCC"
* "bomedy" - comedy
* B L O O D- Blood Love Overcomes Our Depression
* B.R.A.A.T. - Bloods rule all around town
* "Bro" means Blood (way of seeing if there's a blood in jail)
* "Bool" - cool
* "Boompady Bop"- Phrase said by a Blood to disrespect a Crip
* "BPB" - Bragging Pretty Bitches
* "Dipset" - blood faction
* "Bunny Hunters" - Bounty Hunters
* "burners" mean guns
* "C.K." means "Crip killer"
* C.R.A.B.- Crips Really Are Bloods
* "Ike" - dude
* "Rips" refers to Crips
* "B-rabs" refers to Crips insult - "Brabs" means Crabs, what Bloods call Crips but since they cannot pronounce the C they use a B.
* "Erickets" refers to Crips insult
* "Denver Lames" refer (derogatorily) to the Denver Lane Bloods
* "GS"- Gay soldier, said by a Blood to disrespect a Crip
* Hard Backs- derogative terms for Crips
* jungles - ghetto areas belonging to Bloods
* "MOB" means money over bitches and member of bloods
* OG - Original Gangster
* OTM - "Out That Mob"
* Red DoggTags - Identifies EastCoast Bloods
* Rice Crispies refers to the Raymond Ave Crips
* Nappy Heads for the Neighborhood Crips
* "One Eight Trey" - East Coast Bloods
* Paisley - design used by Bloods on bandannas
* "pu55y" - variation of pussy
* "Swayhooks" - Swans
* "Sissies" - perjorative term for Rollin Sixties
* "Tramps" - Eight Tray Gangster
* "Peter Rolled" is a Bloods term for murder
* "Blooded in" means admitted as a full member
* "What dat B like homeboy!"
* "What It B-Like"
* "What's Poppin" - "What's up/happening"
* "What's Brakin"

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Virginia Fusion Center Bloods Street Gang Intelligence Report

The Bloods street gang has become one of the most violent and notorious criminal organizations, spreading its influence in the U.S. from coast to coast. A traditionally African American gang, Bloods membership today includes Caucasians, Hispanics, and Asians. Blood members are involved in a variety of criminal activities including murder, assault, robbery, and narcotics distribution. Nationally, gang membership in the Bloods has been estimated between 15,000 and 20,000 members.1 Blood sets range from highly organized and structured groups similar to the Italian Mafia to loosely organized cliques with little discipline and loyalty. The Bloods have grown in popularity over the years thanks in part to the proliferation of music, movies, and television shows glorifying the “gangsta” lifestyle as well as social networking sites and the vast amount of information on the gang available on the Internet. Current intelligence gathered by the Virginia Fusion Center and other law enforcement agencies indicates the Bloods are a significant criminal threat to the Commonwealth and will continue to grow in numbers and operational scope.


The Bloods, like many street gangs, have created a unique form of identification including language, apparel, tattoos, graffiti, and hand signs. The gang has created an entire subculture with variations from coast to coast and set to set.


Traditional Blood colors are red and black, but sets have been known to utilize green, brown, pink, beige, and orange as well. The colors a set chooses are determined by their influences, alliances, and preferences; however, a trend has also been noted where gangs are choosing to refrain from wearing their traditional red to deflect attention from law enforcement. Colors are worn as a sign of pride in their gang affiliation as well as an intimidation factor to non-gang members and rivals. Gang members will represent their set by “flagging,” or wearing bandanas. These bandanas or “flags” can be worn around the head, face, wrist, ankles, or in their back pocket. Having a flag is very significant to a gang member; typically flags are given at the time of initiation into the gang. It is considered disrespectful to let a flag fall on the ground and rival gang members will make a show of throwing their rival’s flag on the ground and stepping on it to show disrespect.

Beyond wearing flags to show their gang affiliation, Blood members often wear clothing, jewelry, and other accessories tied to their gang to represent their set. Any type of apparel in their traditional color of red can be exploited by gang members including clothing with cartoon characters and sports paraphernalia. Gang members may also wear handmade bead necklaces and modified rosaries in their gang colors.

Gang Graffiti:

Graffiti has often been described as the “newspaper of the streets.” Careful analysis of gang graffiti can indicate the gang and set, the artist or tagger, their affiliation, rival gangs, and current gang activity. Gangs use graffiti to claim territory, and where there are several gangs present, graffiti may be marked out by rival gangs and replaced with their own. Gang members may also venture into their rival’s territory to deface property with graffiti as a sign of disrespect and a challenge to their rival. Typical gang graffiti is usually in a single color and will be simple in design. Complex and colorful graffiti is generally not gang related.


Hierarchy within the gang structure may take several different forms depending on the gang’s affiliation to the West or East Coast. Sets have been known to adopt a paramilitary structure as well as a mafia inspired hierarchy. Below are two examples of hierarchy used.

Southside Brim:
1. Triple OG
2. OG
3. Baby OG
4. OYG
5. Young Gangster
6. OBG
7. Baby Gangster

Nine Trey Gangsters:
1. Godfather
2. Big 020
3. Low 020
4. 5 Star General
5. 4 Star General
6. 3 Star General
7. 2 Star General
8. 1 Star General

Gang sets may use additional organizational structures including ranks of ministers, captains, and lieutenants. The head of the set is typically known as an Original Gangster (OG) or Godfather. The set leader may be in contact with other set leaders but the lower level soldiers may have no knowledge of other sets, their activities, or their leadership.

Blood sets that share set names with the larger West Coast14 and East Coast Bloods may not be directly connected to the larger gangs but usually have knowledge of the gang’s history and rules. Many Blood gangs operate as independent sets although members may know or be related to Bloods in other areas. Additionally, sets may be connected through inmates in the prison system. Many small local gangs’ ties to the larger Bloods sets may be tenuous at best. These smaller sets may mimic the culture of the Bloods in terms of colors, clothing, and tattoos; however, their membership and scope of criminal activity is primarily local.

Friday, June 4, 2010

Blood Gangs In Maryland

Bloods engage in local drug sales, robbery, burglary, and assaults within and between gang members. Violence can also erupt as they either defend drug territory or if they perceive that someone is not showing them “respect.” Often those trying to be accepted as members are most violent. New members are often required to commit a crime to demonstrate their commitment to the gang and/or to prove they are not cops.


Bloods refers to a loosely structured association of smaller street gangs, known as “sets,” which has adopted a common gang culture. Each set has its own leader and generally operates independently from the others.

Most Bloods members are African American males, although some sets have recruited female members as well as members from other races and ethnic backgrounds. Members range in age from early teens to mid-twenties, however some hold leadership positions into their late twenties and occasionally thirties.

There is no known national leader of the Bloods but individual Bloods sets have a hierarchical leadership structure with identifiable levels of membership. These levels of membership indicate status within a gang. A leader, typically an older member with a more extensive criminal background, runs each set. A set leader is not elected but rather asserts himself by developing and managing the gang’s criminal enterprises through his reputation for violence and ruthlessness and through his personal charisma. The majority of set members are called “Soldiers,” who are typically between the ages of 16 and 22. Soldiers have a strong sense of commitment to their set and are extremely dangerous because of their willingness to use violence both to obtain the respect of gang members and to respond to any person who “disrespects” the set. “Associates” are not full members, but they identify with the gang and take part in various criminal activities. To the extent that women belong to the gang, they are usually associate members and tend to be used by their male counterparts to carry weapons, hold drugs, or by prostituting themselves to make money for their set.

Recruitment is often influenced by a recruitee’s environment. Bloods recruit heavily among school-age youth in predominantly poor African American communities. Gang membership offers youth a sense of belonging and protection. It also offers immediate gratification to economically disadvantaged youth who view the trappings of gang life—gold jewelry, cash, expensive sports clothing—as particularly alluring.

Bloods members may go through different types of initiations. Some may join the gang because they are friends or relatives of the gang leaders. Others go through an initiation process that might include committing an armed robbery to bring something of value back to the gang, performing an act of violence, or being beaten by members in a ceremony called a “beat-in,” “kangaroo walk,” or “bull-pen.” This initiation is meant to test the courage and loyalty of the member. In some sets, the commission of a criminal act is also meant to prove that the initiate is not a police officer. Female associates undergo a similar initiation process; some sets require women to be “sexed in” by having sex with some or all of the set members.


Bloods members identify themselves through various gang indicators such as colors, clothing, symbols, tattoos, jewelry, graffiti, language, and hand signs.

The Bloods gang color is red. They like to wear sports clothing, including team “Starter” jackets that show their gang color. Some of their favorite teams include the San Francisco Forty-Niners, the Philadelphia Phillies, and the Chicago Bulls. They are also known to wear Dallas Cowboys clothing, whose logo contains a five-pointed star. It is important to note that many young people wear these colors and sports clothing and these indicators alone should not be viewed as evidence of gang membership.

The most commonly used Bloods symbols include the number “5,” the five-pointed star, and the five-pointed crown. These symbols are meant to show the Bloods’ affiliation with the People Nation, a large coalition of affiliates created to protect alliance members within the federal and state prison systems. These symbols may be seen in the tattoos, jewelry, and clothing that gang members wear as well as in gang graffiti, which is used by the Bloods to mark their territory. Many graffiti include gang name, nicknames, declaration of loyalty, threats against rival gangs, or a description of criminal acts in which the gang has been involved. Bloods graffiti might also include the word “Piru” which refers to the fact that the first known Bloods gang was formed by individuals from Piru Street in Compton, California. Finally, Bloods graffiti might include rival gang symbols (particularly those of the Crips) that are drawn upside down. This is meant as an insult to the rival group and its symbols.

Bloods members also have a unique language. Bloods greet each other using the word “Blood” and often avoid using words with the letter “C.” Finally, Bloods use hand signs to communicate with one another. Hand signs may be a singular movement, like the American Sign Language letter “B,” or a series of movements using one or both hands for more complex phrases.

United Blood Nation (UBN) or East Coast Bloods initiates often receive a dog-paw mark, represented by three dots often burned with a cigarette, on their right shoulder. Other UBN symbols include a bulldog and a bull.


Individual Bloods sets exist in virtually every state and generally fall into three categories—those associated with the original Los Angeles-based Bloods gangs, those affiliated with the United Blood Nation (UBN), and independent gangs that adopt some of the symbols and culture of Bloods.

The oldest and most familiar Bloods sets formed in the early 1970s in Los Angeles to provide protection from the much larger Crips street gang association. At the time, Crips sets outnumbered Bloods sets by three to one. To assert their power despite this difference in numbers, Bloods sets became increasingly violent, especially against rival Crips members.

During the 1980s, Bloods gang members began distributing crack cocaine in Los Angeles. The huge profits generated by the crack cocaine market swelled the ranks of Bloods sets and induced many “entrepreneurial” members to migrate to other cities to set up new markets. The glorification of “gangster life” through movies like “Colors” also encouraged youth throughout the country to emulate the Bloods culture, symbols, and colors.

Bloods on the East coast are often referred to as the United Blood Nation. African-American inmates founded the UBN, also known as the East Coast Bloods, in the New York City Department of Corrections in 1993 to protect themselves from attacks by Latino prison gangs. The UBN was emulating the Bloods street gangs in Los Angeles. But while there is some cultural affinity between LA-based Bloods and UBN, their structure and philosophy are different, and they act independently of each other. The UBN, for example, tends to be more organized and the sets share a comprehensive philosophy, expressed in an oath, a prayer, a song, a motto, a concept of war, and 31 common rules. UBN sets also tend to be more racially diverse. UBN sets are most active in the northeast and mid-Atlantic regions.

Most Maryland Bloods groups have either a line of communication or a lineage that goes back to the New York/New Jersey faction of the UBN. In the housing complexes where these gangs are active, there is considerable evidence of links with Bloods members from New Jersey and New York. Some families move from NJ/NY to get away from gang activity but end up bringing youth who identify themselves with these gangs to the area. However, Bloods in Maryland are typically independent gangs although members may know or be related to Bloods in other areas. They follow the “culture” of the Bloods gang in terms of colors, clothing, tattoos, however their membership and criminal activity are primarily local.

Maryland Activity

Law enforcement officers from Baltimore City and Baltimore, Harford, and Prince George’s counties and Hagerstown have documented Bloods in their jurisdictions. Carroll and Frederick counties have a small Bloods presence. These gangs are dominantly African American, but there are some Caucasian members, as well. Many of the Bloods do not wear gang colors and are closemouthed about their membership and activities. Bloods sets have a high level of transience with membership being fluid and interaction with New York and New Jersey Bloods. Most of these gangs are involved in street level distribution of drugs, robberies, and assaults.

Some New York Bloods come to the area to sell drugs and are then arrested and incarcerated in Maryland. Given the length of their drug sentences (often 4 to6 years), members’ families often move from New York to Maryland to make visitations easier. Those families then build ties in the community and when the family member who was incarcerated is released they stay in Maryland, especially in Baltimore and Hagerstown.

Allies and Rivals

Bloods consider themselves allies with members of the People Nation and rivals of all gangs associated with the Folk Nation gang alliance. These alliances were established in the 1980s to protect alliance members within the federal and state prison systems. The People Nation alliance includes Black Peace Stones, Cobra Stones, Insane Popes, Gaylords, Future Stones, Insane Unknown, King Cobras, Latin Counts, Latin Dragons, Latin Kings, Latin Pachucos, Latin Saints, Spanish Lords, and Vice Lord Nation. The Folk Nation alliance members (and thus, Bloods rivals) include the Bloods’ biggest rival, the Crips, as well as many other gangs, including the Gangster Disciples, the Black Disciples, and the Black Gangsters among others.

In some instances, Bloods and UBN sets will associate with traditional rival gangs, such as the Crips or the Latin Kings, when such associations benefit the criminal enterprises of both gangs.

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Klein, M.W. (1995). The American Street Gang: Its Nature, Prevalence, and Control. New York, NY: Oxford University Press.

Sachs, Steven L. (1997). Street Gang Awareness: A Resource Guide for Parents and Professionals. Minneapolis, MN: Fairview Press.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

NYPD Blood Street Gang Manual

nypd manualThis book is a compilation of various gang intelligence information from various sources including detective and police officer files, primarily confiscated from arrested and/or incarcerated individual gang notes and drawings. Additional material was obtained from other law enforcement agencies’ publications and presentations used for internal officer training, as well as from various other gang publications and internet sources.

Six major New York City gangs are presented in this book: the Bloods, the Almighty Latin King and Queen Nation, the Netas, the Crips, Mara Salvatrucha (MS-13), and the Mexican Gangs. Sections within this book include the origin and history of the gang, its structure, rules and regulations, oaths and pledges, symbols and emblems, coded language and hand signals, clothing, tattoos and graffiti. It is our hope that an officer’s knowledge of gang characteristics will assist in combating gang-motivated crimes and reduce the propensity for violence towards the law enforcement community and innocent citizens.

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