Beaumont pastor surprised at growing number of gang members in Texas

There are about 100,000 gang members across Texas, according to a report by the Texas Department of public safety.

JEFFERSON COUNTY - The Texas Department of Public Safety revealing this week there are about 100,000 gang members across the state.

In Jefferson County, gangs are active according to the district attorney’s office. “We have to do our part to steer them away from the allurement of gang life and gang violence.” Said Rev. Dr. Irvin Barrett.

Barrett is the pastor at Sunlight Baptist Church and was stunned to hear that the number of gang members reaches the thousands in Texas.

He and church members are going to different Beaumont neighborhoods knocking on doors to intervene with young people before they take the wrong path. They are doing it twice a week. 

Assistant Chief Marcelo Molfino with the Jefferson County District Attorney’s Office explains children as young as 12 years old are already joining gang organizations.

According to a DPS report, gang members use social media to communicate, boast, and recruit young generations.

“If they are not getting love at home then they are getting it from that group in the street. They are looking for acceptance.” Said Molfino.

Gangs remain a significant threat to public safety in Texas according to the report. The most significant gangs in Texas are Tango Blast, Latin Kings, and Texas Mexican Mafia.

© 2017 KBMT-TV


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