The Corpus Christi Police Department is focusing more attention, more manpower and more equipment on the task of stopping gang-related violence in this city.
Neighborhoods once known for gang activity are much quieter now. It is because the CCPD Gang Unit is growing. More officers leads to less crime, which is something residents in those neighborhoods have noticed.
With increased manpower, the unit is able to spend more time looking for crime than responding to it. That means more criminals are taken off the streets.
On Wednesday night, officers from the CCPD Gang Unit spotted a known gang member, someone they've seen before. They took him in for evading arrest after he took off on his bike when he saw their car.
The 19-year old said he has spent four or five years of his life behind bars. His tattoos represent his gang affiliation, symbols the Gang Unit studies, and in some cases, leads them to arrests.
"If you come and tell them this guy has a tattoo, they'll usually know right off the bat who it is," CCPD's Sgt. I. Carrasco said.
Some of the officers in the Gang Unit just returned from a week of specialized training in San Antonio with the Texas Gang Investigators Association, with the CCPD's Sgt. Ringo DeLeon as the president of the organization.
"The violence, it's no longer what it used to be," DeLeon said. "Through our trainings, when there are key red flags we need to look at, we focus on that."
It's information they are using on the streets of Corpus Christi.
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