WHAT IS A GANG?

A gang is defined under California law as any ongoing organization that has a common name, sign or symbol and whose primary activity is to engage in a pattern of criminal activity.  It can’t be any criminal activity.  It must be specifically included in the “Dirty 33.”  Typically, southern California gangs have names and common signs and symbols.  Gang members demonstrate their allegiance to the gang by wearing gang colors and getting tattoos with the gang’s name or sign.

  1. any ongoing organization, association, or group of three or more persons, whether formal or informal;

  2. that has a common name or common identifying sign or symbol;

  3. that has, as one or more of its primary activities, the commission of  a violent felony included in Penal Code 182.22(e)(1)-(25);

  4. whose members, whether acting alone or together, engage in or have engaged in a pattern of criminal gang activity.

The Dirty 33

The Dirty 33 are specifically defined under California law.  The gang must primarily engage in these activities:

  1. Assault with a deadly weapon (CPC § 24.)
  2. Robbery (CPC § 211)
  3. (3) Unlawful homicide or manslaughter (CPC § 187)
  4. The sale, possession for sale, transportation, manufacture, offer for sale, or offer to manufacture controlled substances (CHS § 11054, 11055, 11056, 11057, and 11058)
  5. Shooting at an inhabited dwelling or occupied motor vehicle (CPC § 246)
  6. Discharging or permitting the discharge of a firearm from a motor vehicle (CPC § 26100(a)&(b))
  7. Arson (CPC § 450)
  8. Intimidating a witness (CPC § 136.1)
  9. Grand theft (CPC § 487)
  10. Grand theft of any firearm, vehicle, trailer, or vessel
  11. Burglary (CPC § 459)
  12. Rape (CPC § 261)
  13. Looting (CPC § 463)
  14. Money (CPC § 186.10)
  15. Kidnapping (CPC § 207)
  16. Mayhem (CPC § 203)
  17. Aggravated mayhem (CPC § 205)
  18. Torture (CPC § 206)
  19. Felony extortion (CPC § 518 and 520)
  20. Felony vandalism (CPC § 594)
  21. Carjacking (CPC § 215)
  22. The sale, delivery, or transfer of a firearm (CPC § 29610)
  23. Possession of a pistol, revolver, or other firearm capable of being concealed (CPC § 29610)
  24. Criminal threats (CPC § 422)
  25. Theft and unlawful taking or driving of a vehicle (CVC § 10851)
  26. Felony theft of an access card or account information (CPC § 484e)
  27. Counterfeiting access card (CPC § 484f)
  28. Felony fraudulent use of an access card (CPC § 484g)
  29. Unlawful use of personal identifying information (CPC § 530.5)
  30. Wrongfully obtaining license  (CPC § 529.7)
  31. Prohibited possession of a firearm in violation (CPC § 29800)
  32. Carrying a concealed firearm (CPC § 25400)
  33. Carrying a loaded firearm (CPC § 25850)

Learn More About Gang Documentation →