So many neighbors just dont care


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kd7nqb
September 4, 2008, 03:33 AM
So long story short my girlfriend and I live about 4 blocks from each other. I work swing shift and generally stop by her place after work and then end up leaving when we both need to go to bed a few hours later.

This past weekend she went out of town with her family so I was not at her place at all. Monday (labor day) I went over after she got home for dinner. As I looked out her window I saw that the apartment building across from hers (same complex differnet building) was COVERED in MS-13 graffitti. I reconized how dangerous this is immediatly. However she did not really know anything about the gang. The following morning I called our local PD and reported the Graffitti, I know for a fact it was not their Friday and was on Monday. As of Tuesday AM the PD did not have it reported until I called at least according to the officer I spoke with.

This is not an area known for gang vilolence but we are a growing suburb so we do have crime.

Now here is the set of questions,

she is not a "gun enthusiast" but she has recently purchased a .410 shotgun and a .22lr rifle. We went to the range recently and she is proficent with both. But she has no formal or for that matter informal home defense training. She certainly understands that her best defense is a deadbolt and a cell phone.
I guess what bothers me more is that not only did the tags go unreported but when she casually mentioned it to a few neighbors none of them seemed to have done any more than thought "Thats looks ugly"

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loneviking
September 4, 2008, 04:20 AM
It may be that they just don't know. It can be tough without some practice and a guide to 'read' the gang tags. 18th streeters, for example, can go by '18', 'diez y ocho', 'xv111'--but they are all the same basic gang.

I'd be looking to move your girlfriend to a safer neighborhood or drastically upgrading her firepower and gunfighting skills. Some gangs won't target 'neutrals', but the MS 13 will!

kd7nqb
September 4, 2008, 04:26 AM
It can be tough without some practice and a guide to 'read' the gang tags. 18th streeters, for example, can go by '18', 'diez y ocho', 'xv111'--but they are all the same basic gang.


I will post pics of the tags later but lets be clear only one tag was a cryptic type the others said MS-13 in about 4ft high letters. I understand that not everyone knows who or what MS-13 is but it seems like if a giant tag shows up on your building you may want to let the cops know.

jakemccoy
September 4, 2008, 04:37 AM
Don't freak out unnecessarily. If you're anywhere near a major city, tags are par for the course.

I don't know about moving just because you see MS-13 tags. That's a bit extreme. Depending on where you live, it could be Malibu's Most Wanted trying to be hard and scare people. Even if it's an actual gang, respond but don't overreact.

The best way to respond to graffiti is have it removed immediately, preferably before the sun goes down the next day. The thugs will eventually get tired of tagging if they can't roll by and see their "art work".

There's usually a special number to call specifically for graffiti. If the city doesn't act fast enough, get your own paint and cover it up. We don't have to rely on the government all the time. I've been known to cover tags near my house and randomly clean up trash. It pisses me off. I live in a "good neighborhood", but I'm pretty sure plenty of thugs have cars to get them around.

She's on the right track with being pro-gun. Take some self defense and home defense classes with her. Stay safe and sane.

sernv99
September 4, 2008, 07:17 AM
you don't know if it's some dumb kid wannabes just vandalizing the buildings with MS-13 graffitti or it is really some hardcore gang members doing it. I never heard of MS-13 members tagging a building completely with their gang graffitti...or any gang for that matter. Sounds like Malibu's Most Wanted as another poster pointed out.

kingpin008
September 4, 2008, 07:45 AM
Agreed, I wouldn't freak out too much. While MS-13 is a ridicuously vicious set, they generally don't hassle "civilians" unless they're in a pretty urban area and they have nothing better to do.


Also agreed on going easy on the neighbors. I know what MS-13 is, but I wouldn't have called the cops for a few reasons - for one, if there's enough of them around to tag things, chances are the cops already know about 'em. Not much they're going to do about a little graffiti without catching whoever did it in the act. And like others said, it could very well be little punk neighborhood kids who are trying to look like badasses. If that's the case, and anyone from the actual gang finds them doing it...well, they won't do it any more.

I guess if I were you, I'd make sure that my girl had a cell phone and some sort of pepper spray on her at all times when she was out & about, and when she was in, her doors were locked and her shotgun was loaded in an easily-accessible place should she need it.

+1 to staying where you're at. Moving is more than a little extreme in this case, especially when you realize that like it or not, these groups aren't exactly staying put.

ZeSpectre
September 4, 2008, 07:58 AM
The best way to respond to graffiti is have it removed immediately, preferably before the sun goes down the next day. The thugs will eventually get tired of tagging if they can't roll by and see their "art work".

Yes you must fight to get the tagging removed or covered immediately! Think of it this way, removing/covering the tagging is also a form of tagging, you and your neighbors are saying "hey, you may think this is going to be your neighborhood, but in fact it already belongs to us".

Leaving the tags up says "this is open turf ready for takeover".

Believe me I know, I've had to fight this war before (and won both times because I wouldn't let the taggers get a foothold).

I guess what bothers me more is that not only did the tags go unreported but when she casually mentioned it to a few neighbors none of them seemed to have done any more than thought "Thats looks ugly"
Welcome to the way the "nanny state" is training people to think. "Nanny-think" says that the "officials" will notice the problem and take care of it and we don't have to dirty our hands or be bothered about it. Reality is we each have to take our civic responsibility seriously and actively notify the "officials" and keep pushing until they do their job.

So much for that rant.

Now as to your girl's protection, if she's not willing to get serious about what a self defense firearm means in terms of responsibility for training and the moral requirements then don't even go there. Sounds like she should probably find some non-firearms alternatives for her personal protection.

highlander 5
September 4, 2008, 08:06 AM
Why put up "tags" to attract attention to yourself? I would agree that tags don't mean it's the Bloods or MS 13. I live in a "nice" neighborhood and the building next to my house has various "tags" on it. The owner has been trying to sell it for 7 years or so,it's empty and that makes it a prime target for the young and brainless to vandalize it.

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