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Law Enforcement Gang Summit Reviews Study's Findings & Develops Strategy to Share Information on Fox Valley's Gangs
APPLETON - The Wisconsin Department of Justice recently completed an analysis of gang activity in the Fox Valley. The Northeast Wisconsin Gang Assessment (NWGA) is a comprehensive look at the gang activity currently affecting the Fox Valley Area and neighboring counties. It also describes the various prevention programs in place within the region, and prospective prevention programs that may be effective.
Over twenty law enforcement agencies and over thirty-five community-based organizations such as school district and youth clubs provided information. Seven counties, Brown, Calumet, Fond du Lac, Manitowoc, Outagamie, Sheboygan, and Winnebago were included in the Northeast Wisconsin Gang Assessment.
Last week the United States Attorney's Office for the Eastern District of Wisconsin in partnership with the Outagamie County District Attorney's Office and the Fox Valley Technical College Criminal Justice Center for Innovation brought together law enforcement representatives from throughout the Fox Valley to share the findings of the study and to work on developing a strategy to share information on the Fox Valley's gangs.
"All law enforcement agencies representing the larger cities in Northeast Wisconsin reported a significant problem with at least one gang type, " said Wisconsin Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen. "Of the law enforcement agencies surveyed, the majority reported an increase in gang activity over the past five years."
Law enforcement agencies surveyed reported both a migration of gangs from larger cities such as Chicago, Milwaukee and the Twin Cities, and "homegrown" gang members. The specific numbers of migratory gang members versus homegrown gang members was not available.
"School districts in Northeast Wisconsin reported a larger problem with gang activity in the community than in the schools," said Van Hollen.
Overall, over one hundred different gangs were reported throughout Northeast Wisconsin. These refer to only the known gangs operating within the area. The counties with the largest number of known gangs were Outagamie (43), Sheboygan (50), and Winnebago (56) Counties. Brown County reported twenty-nine known gangs, but due to the lack of gang personnel, the actual number is believed to be much larger.
"There are some prevention and intervention programs currently in place in Northeastern Wisconsin," said Van Hollen. "These initiatives include the Fox Valley Gang Task Force, the CounterAct program, the Gang Resistance Education and Training (G.R.E.A.T.) program, and the Gang Prevention Through Targeted Outreach (GPTTO) & Gang Intervention Through Targeted Outreach (TITTO) initiatives run by the Boys & Girls Club of the Fox Valley."
A complete copy of the report can be accessed below: