Local News

Parents Urged to Watch for Signs of Gang Involvement

Posted March 23, 2007

— Fayetteville community leaders unveiled a TV public service announcement on Friday about gangs and urged parents to get more involved with their children's lives.

The message came at a meeting of the Cumberland Gang Prevention Project.

"Parents should be talking to their kid about gangs, just as they talk to them about sex, drugs, alcohol and tobacco," said Lt. Mark Bridgeman, a gang investigator at the Fayetteville Police Department.

Although they won't say how many gang members might be roaming the streets, they say they are recruiting children in elementary school and have been documented in middle and high schools throughout Cumberland County.

"You know, if you look at the overall population, the number of gangs is very very small," Bridgeman said. "However, it does generate a lot of concern."

Gang members are typically children who are failing in school, are not involved in extracurricular activities and need to feel a sense of belonging. Officials say children are being recruited to gangs through friendships and Internet sites such as Myspace.

They urge parents to enroll their children in church or school activities at an early age.

"We get to the kids while they're young," Fayetteville Interim Police Chief Tom Bergamine said Friday. "Then they get up to the older teen years -- it's not a problem."

Law enforcement officers say many parents have little or no idea their children are involved and urge parents to look for signs ,such as hand symbols, graffiti in the neighborhood and children's attraction to violent images.


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  • mslisac363 Mar 28, 2007

    Gangs are easy to find! They are always standing somewhere, or going somewhere in a pack. There are also parents that are in gangs. We have kids having kids today, and grandma is only 30 years of age.

  • kota2947 Mar 27, 2007

    Remember the boston gang party?...OH YOU DONT....YOU WILL

  • kota2947 Mar 27, 2007


  • teach Mar 26, 2007

    If a person don't want to learn, he ain't going to be nothing but trouble to the rest of us. Put him in the corner. Put him in a closet by himself. Lock him up so the rest of us can get on with our lives. You can't rehabilitate someone who got a narrow mind. You can't educate him to nothing. Just keep him out of the way so we can see what's really out there. Kick him while he's down, too. Don't let that sucker get off the ground once you got him down. Use them jackboots. Use that club. Use that gang mentality of the right, of the left, of the middle of the road. But most of all let him keep his eyes shut and his mouth open. That's the freedom of speech and the freedom of ignorance the rest of us has fought for. So we can talk stupid on forums like dis one. Thanks WRAL for letting us speak as ignorant as TV news keeps us, without real fact, with just points of view, snippets of just enough to scare us into a real rage, and not even how to ID gang symbols, or what to do once we see them.

  • iampostingmyopinion Mar 26, 2007

    "You know, if you look at the overall population, the number of gangs is very very small," Bridgeman said.

    I don't care what our population is, ONE is far too many!

  • Watcher Of Things Mar 25, 2007


    Ever since the left took a parents rights away we have seen this problem grow exponentially!

    1) Make parents responsible for THEIR OWN KIDS!
    2) Make kids stay in like good kids do!

    .... You know the kind!

    Just like MOST successful kids!

    If they spent time studying their school work - how could they have time getting into much trouble?

    Poor kids!

    The rich man is holding them down!

    WHY bother improving yourself when you can just as easily look like trash, act like trash, and get SYMPATHY for how you were held down by the same system you are robbing, killing, dealing drugs to, and selling your women to!

    Ya' Po' Thang!

    Yeah - ACT the part - LIVE the part - and GET the part of the trash you want to be ....

    ............. EARNING!

    Sympathy is easily found in the dictionary between $hit and syphilis - IF you are looking for it ....

  • jannisheart Mar 25, 2007

    You can't imagine how many parents TEACH these gang activities to their children. You can't teach children not to be in gangs when mommy and daddy are in one or "acting" like they're in one.

  • mohnkae Mar 24, 2007

    Mug of Stout, While all of us agree that gangs are a detriment to society, we obviously have different ideas about how to fix the problem. However I feel that dehumanizing people, "They are just little vermin." and "They are just animals..." is indicative of a Fascist ideology.

  • Lizard Paw Mar 23, 2007

    Gangs are the logical response to being taught in our public schools that people are no more than animals and that there is no God. Get use to it cause it just gets worse.

  • Friend Mar 23, 2007

    Thanks Mugs, you never know what a person has been through just by reading their post. I suspect teach is a good person and good parent who has learned things through experience like the rest of us. I don't pretend to know her history, but sometimes a parent can do all the right things and the children still choose the wrong path. In today's society their are a lot of single mother's some try to work and earn a living while some will just draw welfare and stay at home. A lot of times due to dead-beat Dads. So the working mother sacrafices family time for her carreer and the stay at home mother sacrafices her chance at a carreer to raise her family. So which on is right, society will throw blame at both ways and their in a no-win sitiuation. Given this situation it's easy to see how children look elsewhere for acceptance. You know on my 1st birthday I put the candle out with my hand, but I learned from my mistake. As long as we learn from them it's good, because we all make them.