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Gangs

November 09, 1987

I read with great interest the editorial "Gangs as Terrorists" (Oct. 17). Our department has become very aware, in recent years, of the crime, human suffering and fear that these offenders bring to our community. The mobility, clandestine communication and armaments available and used by these individuals has caused much concern to us. We have acted swiftly to provide complete information to sentencing courts regarding gang criminal activity and strictly enforce the terms of probation of these juveniles and adult offenders once released from incarceration.

It is our belief that criminal activity and intimidation have no place within any part of the Orange County community. Unfortunately, we are aware that private citizens and businessmen are being extorted, robbed, and threatened by these criminals and, all too often, the crime goes unreported to authorities. The citizenry of Orange County needs to be alert to these roving groups of young men whose true motive is sheer profit and intimidation.

Law enforcement authorities and this agency are prepared to take action against these people, but we all require the assistance of the community at large to help in that effort. Developing information which can lead to the successful prosecution and/or supervision of these gang members cannot be accomplished without a committed community effort. Our agency stands ready to help protect this county's citizens from the gang menace, but we need the help of the community that is being victimized.

MICHAEL SCHUMACHER

Chief Probation Officer

County of Orange

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