Tri-Agency Resource Gang Enforcement Team (T.A.R.G.E.T.) John Anderson Assistant District Attorney Orange County District Attorney’s Office
PILOT PROGRAM - WESTMINSTER • January 1992 - TARGET Team pilot program formed in City of Westminster • Concept demonstrably effective in Westminster • June 1994 County-wide TARGET program implemented • Currently 12 teams are in place working several geographical locations & types of gangs
Basic Concepts of T.A.R.G.E.T. • TEAM (Multi-Agency Cooperation) • The unit includes police detectives, probation officer, and district attorney. • SELECTIVE INTERVENTION • The unit targets specific repeat offenders and hardcore gang members.
Team Composition • Police: • Two police investigators or detectives • Sergeant who oversees the day to day law enforcement activities of the team • Probation: • Deputy Probation Officer • Prosecution: • Deputy District Attorney • District Attorney Investigator
Team Missions • 1. Removing selected hardcore gang Member targets • 2. Gathering intelligence on all gangs & gang members in city • 3. Developing innovative techniques • 4. Developing personnel expertise in detecting, analyzing & prosecuting gang crimes • 5. Documenting effectiveness
Selective Intervention • Research studies provided the rationale for targeting serious repeat offenders in order to impact crime. • Marvin E. Wolfgang (1972, 1983) found that 18% of juveniles in a birth cohort were responsible for 52% of crime committed by that cohort. • Kurtz and Moore (1994) from the Orange County Probation Department found that 8% of first-time juvenile offenders were responsible for 55% of the group’s subsequent crime.
2007 TARGET Teams • North Orange County – joint jurisdiction team serving Fullerton, La Habra & Buena Park • Gangs are mostly Hispanic with some Black and skinhead gangs • Anaheim – two teams • Gangs predominantly Hispanic • Garden Grove • Nearly all Asian with some Hispanic gangs
2007 TARGET Teams cont. • Costa Mesa • Mostly Hispanic gangs • Some skinhead racist gangs • Orange half-time team • Hispanic gangs • Tustin half-time team • Hispanic gangs
2007 TARGET Teams cont. • Santa Ana – three teams • Nearly exclusively Hispanic • South County – county territories and south OC cities serviced by OC Sheriff’s Department • Hispanic and white (though not necessarily skinhead/racist) gangs • Westminster • 75% Asian – 25% Hispanic
T.A.R.G.E.T. & Prevention – Intervention Programs • To ensure success in gang control, T.A.R.G.E.T. should be complemented with prevention and intervention programs. • Selective intervention of repeat offenders and hardcore gang members reduces the cohesiveness of their respective gangs. • Prevention programs will educate and discourage juveniles from joining gangs. • Intervention programs peal off the lesser attached members as the gang leadership is disrupted