Albemarle County Police Department Press Release
In light of the recent gang related arrests in connection to the death of Waynesboro Police Reserve Captain Kevin Quick and subsequent inquiries to our agency regarding gangs in our area, the Albemarle County Police Department would like to address the issue of gangs in our community.
There are approximately 183 validated gang members in Albemarle County and the City of Charlottesville. However, we do believe the actual number of gang members is much higher. Homegrown gangs have been in the area for more than 20 years but we also have national gangs like the Bloods, Crips, MS13, Latin Kings, Gangster Disciples, 18th Street, Sureno 13 and others.
The Bloods are the largest gang with numerous sets or offsets.
Some recent crimes in our community have known gang connections. At least one individual involved in the home invasion at Townwood Court
was a validated gang member. That incident resulted in a fatal shooting.
In another recent incident, the US Marshals, along with ACPD and Charlottesville PD investigators, arrested a known Blood member who attempted escape capture on arrest warrants. The suspect was later apprehended.
The ACPD is working with our regional partners to monitor and address gang activity. The Gang Reduction Through Active Community Engagement (GRACE) Program is taking a comprehensive approach to the problem including not only gang suppression and enforcement strategies but also prevention and intervention. The program coordinator has been working with schools, juvenile courts, law enforcement officials, probation officers, government agencies, faith-based organizations and grassroots groups to provide alternatives to gang involvement.
A comprehensive assessment has been conducted and the results are now being reviewed. The conclusions will be shared with the community at a later date.This comprehensive approach is a step in the right direction. We believe the findings from this study will be beneficial in moving forward. We will continue to focus on the issue but want the community to know that our region is not immune to gangs and gang violence.