Crip graffiti tag in Olympia, Washington
|Founded by||Raymond Washington and Stanley Williams|
|Founding location||Los Angeles, California, |
|Ethnicity||Mostly African American|
|Membership (est.)||30,000 to 35,000 in 2008|
|Criminal activities||Drug trafficking, robbery, extortion, murder, burglary, racketeering, illegal gambling, theft|
|Allies|| Folk Nation |
Tiny Rascal Gang
La Raza Nation
Black Guerrilla Family
|Rivals|| Bloods |
United Blood Nation
Piru Street Boys
Sureños (certain sets)
Tree Top Pirus
Avenue Piru Gang
The Crips are a gang based in the coastal regions of southern California. They were founded in Los Angeles, California in 1969 mainly by Raymond Washington and Stanley Williams. Once a single alliance between two autonomous gangs, they are now a loosely connected network of individual "sets", often engaged in open warfare with one another. Its members traditionally wear blue clothing, a practice that has waned somewhat due to police crackdowns specifically targeting gang members. Historically, members have been primarily of African-American heritage.
A gang is a group of associates, friends or members of a family with a defined leadership and internal organization that identifies with or claims control over territory in a community and engages, either individually or collectively, in illegal, and possibly violent, behavior. Some criminal gang members are "jumped in", or they have to prove their loyalty and right to belong by committing certain acts, usually theft or violence. A member of a gang may be called a gangster, a gang banger, or, less specifically, a thug.
Southern California is a geographic and cultural region that generally comprises California's southernmost counties, and is the second most populous urban agglomeration in the United States. The region is traditionally described as eight counties, based on demographics and economic ties: Imperial, Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino, San Diego, Santa Barbara, and Ventura. The more extensive 10-county definition, which includes Kern and San Luis Obispo counties, is also used and is based on historical political divisions.
Raymond Lee Washington was an American gangster, known as the founder of the Crips gang in Los Angeles, California. Washington formed the Crips as a minor street gang in the late 1960s in Los Angeles' South Central area, becoming a prominent local crime boss. In 1971, Washington formed an alliance with Stanley "Tookie" Williams, establishing the Crips as the first major African-American street gang in Los Angeles, and served as one of the co-leaders. In 1974, Washington was convicted of robbery and received a five-year prison sentence, during which his leadership and influence in the Crips declined.
The Crips are one of the largest and most violent associations of street gangs in the United States.With an estimated 30,000 to 35,000 members in 2008, they have been involved in murders, robberies and drug dealing, among other crimes.
The Crips have a long and bitter rivalry with the Bloods.
The Bloods, also known as Original Blood Family (OBF), are a primarily African-American street gang founded in Los Angeles, California. The gang is widely known for its rivalry with the Crips. They are identified by the red color worn by their members and by particular gang symbols, including distinctive hand signs.
Stanley Tookie Williams met Raymond Lee Washington in 1969, and the two decided to unite their local gang members from the west and east sides of South Central Los Angeles in order to battle neighboring street gangs. Most of the members were 17 years old.Williams discounted the sometimes cited founding date of 1969 in his memoir, Blue Rage, Black Redemption. Gang activity in South Central Los Angeles has its roots in a variety of factors dating back to the 1950s and '60s, including post-World War II economic decline leading to joblessness and poverty, racial segregation leading to the formation of black "street clubs" by young African American men who were excluded from organizations such as the Boy Scouts, and the waning of black nationalist organizations such as the Black Panther Party and the Black Power Movement.
The Black Panther Party (BPP), originally the Black Panther Party for Self-Defense, was a political organization founded by Bobby Seale and Huey Newton in October 1966 in Oakland, California. The party was active in the United States from 1966 until 1982, with chapters in numerous major cities, and international chapters operating in the United Kingdom in the early 1970s, and in Algeria from 1969 until 1972.
By 1978, there were 45 Crips gangs, called sets, operating in Los Angeles. They were heavily involved in the production of PCP, marijuana and amphetamines. On March 11, 1979, Stanley Tookie Williams, a member of the Westside Crips, was arrested for four murders and on August 8, 1979, Raymond Washington was gunned down. Washington had been against Crip infighting and after his death several Crip sets started fighting against each other. The Crips leadership was dismantled prompting a deadly gang war between the Rollin' 60 Neighborhood Crips and Eight Tray Gangster Crips which began causing nearby Crip sets to choose sides and align themselves with either the Gangster Crips or Neighborhood Crips waging an all out war in South Central and other cities. The East Coast Crips and the Hoover Crips directly severed their alliance after Washington's death. By 1980, the Crips were in turmoil, warring with the Bloods and against each other. The growth and power of the gang really took off in the early 1980s when crack cocaine hit the streets. In the early 1980s, Crips sets began distributing crack cocaine in Los Angeles. The huge profits from distribution of crack cocaine induced many Crips to establish new markets in other cities and states. As a result, Crip membership grew steadily and by late 1980s it was one of the largest street gangs in the country.In 1999, there were at least 600 Crips sets with more than 30,000 members transporting drugs in the United States.
Crack cocaine, also known simply as crack or rock, is a free base form of cocaine that can be smoked. Crack offers a short but intense high to smokers. The Manual of Adolescent Substance Abuse Treatment calls it the most addictive form of cocaine. Crack first saw widespread use as a recreational drug in primarily impoverished inner city neighborhoods in New York, Philadelphia, Baltimore, Washington, D.C., Los Angeles, and Miami in late 1984 and 1985; its rapid increase in use and availability is sometimes termed as the "crack epidemic".
Some sources suggest that the original name for the alliance, "Cribs", was a name narrowed down from a list of many options, and chosen unanimously from three final choices, which included the Black Overlords, and the Assassins. Cribs was chosen to reflect the young age of the majority of the gang members. The name "Cribs" evolved into the name "Crips" when gang members began carrying around canes to display their "pimp" status. People in the neighborhood then began calling them cripples, or "Crips" for short.A Los Angeles Sentinel article in February 1972 referred to some members as "Crips" (for cripples). Another source suggests "Crips" may have evolved from "Cripplers", a 1970s street gang in Watts of which Raymond Washington was a member. The name had no political, organizational, cryptic, or acronymic meaning, though some have suggested it stands for "Common Revolution In Progress", a backronym. According to the film Bastards of the Party directed by a member of the Bloods, the name represented "Community Revolutionary Interparty Service" or "Community Reform Interparty Service". Williams, in his memoir, further refuted claims that the group was a spin-off of the Black Panther Party or formed for a community agenda, the name "depicted a fighting alliance against street gangs—nothing more, nothing less." Washington, who attended Fremont High School, was the leader of the East Side Crips, and Williams, who attended Washington High School, led the West Side Crips.
Watts is a neighborhood in southern Los Angeles, California. It is located within the South Los Angeles region, bordering the cities of Lynwood and South Gate to the east and southeast, respectively, and the unincorporated community of Willowbrook to the south.
A backronym, or bacronym, is a constructed phrase that purports to be the source of a word that is an acronym. Backronyms may be invented with either serious or humorous intent, or they may be a type of false etymology or folk etymology.
Bastards of the Party is a 2005 documentary film produced by Alex Demyanenko and directed by former Bloods gang-member Cle Sloan. The film explores the creation of two of Los Angeles’s most notorious gangs, the Crips and the Bloods, from the perspective of the Los Angeles community. The film also denounces gang violence and presents meaningful solutions from former gang-members to stop this problem.
Williams recalled that a blue bandana was first worn by Crips founding member Buddha, as a part of his color-coordinated clothing of blue Levi's, a blue shirt, and dark blue suspenders. A blue bandana was worn in tribute to Buddha after he was shot and killed on February 23, 1973, which eventually became the color of blue associated with Crips.
The Crips have over 800 sets with 30,000 to 35,000 members and associate members, including more than 13,000 members in Los Angeles.[ when? ] The states with the highest estimated number of "Crips sets" are California, Texas and Oklahoma and Missouri . Members typically consist of young African-American men, with some members being white, Hispanic, Asian, and Pacific Islander.
In 1992 the LAPD estimated 15,742 Crips in 108 sets; other source estimates were 30,000 to 35,000 in 600 sets in California.
Crips have served in the United States armed forces and on bases in the United States and abroad.
The Crips became popular throughout southern Los Angeles as more youth gangs joined; at one point they outnumbered non-Crip gangs by 3 to 1, sparking disputes with non-Crip gangs, including the L.A. Brims, Athens Park Boys, the Bishops, The Drill Company, and the Denver Lanes. By 1971 the gang's notoriety had spread across Los Angeles.
By 1971, a gang on Piru Street in Compton, California, known as the Piru Street Boys, was formed and associated themselves with the Crips as a set. After two years of peace, a feud began between the Piru Street Boys and the other Crip sets. It would later turn violent as gang warfare ensued between former allies. This battle continued and by 1973, the Piru Street Boys wanted to end the violence and called a meeting with other gangs that were targeted by the Crips. After a long discussion, the Pirus broke all connections to the Crips and started an organization that would later be called the Bloods,a street gang infamous for its rivalry with the Crips.
Since then, other conflicts and feuds were started between many of the remaining sets of the Crips gang. It is a popular misconception that Crips sets feud only with Bloods. In reality, they fight each other—for example, the Rolling 60s Neighborhood Crips and 83 Gangster Crips have been rivals since 1979. In Watts, Los Angeles, the Grape Street Crips and the PJ Watts Crips have feuded so much that the PJ Watts Crips even teamed up with a local Blood set, the Bounty Hunter Bloods, to fight against the Grape Street Crips.In the mid 1990s, the Hoover Crips rivalries and wars with other Crip gangs caused them to become independent and to refrain from using the Crip name, calling themselves the Hoover Criminals instead of Hoover Crips.
The primary rival of the Crips is the Bloods street-gang. The rivalry dates back to the 1960s when Raymond Washington and several other Crips confronted Sylvester Scott and Benson Owens, students at Centennial High School. In response to the attack, Scott, who lived in Compton, established the Piru street-gang, the first "Bloods" street gang. Owens established the West Piru street-gang. The Bloods street-gang was initially formed to provide members protection from the Crips.In late 1972, several gangs that felt victimized by the Crips due to their escalating attacks joined the Piru Street Boys to create a new federation of non-Crip gangs which would later become known as Bloods. Between 1972 and 1979, the rivalry between the Crips and Bloods would grow, accounting for a majority of the gang-related murders in southern Los Angeles. Gang members of the Bloods and Crips occasionally fight against each other and are responsible for a significant portion of gang-related murders in Los Angeles.
In the late 1980s and early 1990s, as many Crip gang members were being sent to various prisons across the country, an alliance was formed between the Crips and the Folk Nation in Midwest and Southern U.S. prisons. This alliance was established as a means of protecting gang members incarcerated in state and federal prison systems. This alliance is strongest within the prisons however, and is less effective on the outside. The alliance between the Crips and Folks is known as "8-ball". A broken "8-ball" would indicate a disagreement or "beef" between Folks and Crips.
Some practices of Crip gang life generally include graffiti and substitutions and deletions of particular letters of the alphabet. The letter "b" in the word "blood" will be "disrespected" among certain sets and written with a cross inside it because of its association with the enemy. The letters "CK", which stand for "Crip killer", will be avoided and substituted with a double "cc", and the letter "b" will be replaced. For example, the words "kick back" will instead be written as "kicc bacc". Many other letters are also altered due to symbolic associations.Crips traditionally refer to each other as "Cuzz", which itself is sometimes used as a moniker for Crip. "Crab" is the most disrespectful epithet to call a Crip, and can warrant fatal retaliation. Crips in prison modules during the 1970s and 1980s would sometimes speak in Swahili to maintain privacy from guards and rival gangs.
Stanley "Tookie" Williams III was an American gangster, known as one of the original founders and leaders of the Crips gang in Los Angeles, California. In 1971, Williams and Raymond Washington formed an alliance establishing the Crips as the first major African-American street gang in South Central Los Angeles. Williams became the de facto leader and the prominent crime boss in South Central in the 1970s. In 1979, Williams was convicted for the murder of four people during two robberies, and was sentenced to death. The highly publicized trial of Williams and extensive appeals for clemency sparked debate on the status of the death penalty in California.
The Gangster Disciples are a criminal street gang which was formed in the Southside of Chicago in the late 1960s, by Larry Hoover, leader of the Supreme Gangsters, and David Barksdale, leader of the Black Disciples. The two groups united to form the Black Gangster Disciple Nation (BGDN). The 6-point star stands for Love, Life, Loyalty, Knowledge, Wisdom, Understanding. In Chicago, the Gangster Disciples have a long and bitter rivalry with the Black Disciples. Since their creation, the Gangster Disciples have branched out throughout the United States.
Redemption: The Stan Tookie Williams Story is a 2004 television film starring Jamie Foxx and Lynn Whitfield. The film was directed by Vondie Curtis-Hall. Other cast members in the film include Lee Thompson Young and CCH Pounder.
The Damu Ridas were an assortment of Bloods gang members from South Central Los Angeles who recorded the Bloods & Crips collaboration albums Bangin' on Wax and Bangin' on Wax 2... The Saga Continues. The Bloods members formed the Damu Ridas, and the Crip members formed Nationwide Rip Ridaz.
Black P. Stones Jungles is a division of the Bloods street gang in some parts of Los Angeles.
American Gangster is a documentary television series, which airs on BET. The show features some of black America's most infamous and powerful gangsters and is narrated by Ving Rhames. The series premiere, on November 28, 2006, amassed around one million viewers. The first season ended on January 9, 2007, and comprised 6 episodes; a season 1 DVD was released on October 23, 2007. The second season aired October 3, 2007; a season 2 DVD was released on June 10, 2008. In April 2009, A&E Networks purchased the rights to air seasons 1–3 on their networks. They can be seen primarily on the Bio Channel and the flagship A&E Channel. They can also be seen on A&E's Crime and Investigation Network.
The Piru's, also known as Piru Street Family and Piru Gangsters (PG), are a Los Angeles street gang alliance based in Compton, and also present in the cities of Carson, Sacramento, Hawthorne, San Diego, Fresno, Santa Barbara and Watts. Piru sets make up most of the original Blood Alliance in Los Angeles. The main colors of Pirus are red and burgundy.
Sanyika Shakur, also known by his former street moniker Monster, is a former member of the Los Angeles gang the Eight Tray Gangster Crips.He got his nickname as a 13-year-old gang member when he beat and stomped a robbery victim until he was disfigured. Shakur claimed to have reformed in prison, joined the Republic of New Afrika movement, and wrote a 1993 memoir called Monster: The Autobiography of an L.A. Gang Member.
Bloods & Crips was a gangsta rap group from Los Angeles County mostly known for their record selling song [Piru Love].
Venice Shoreline Crips, or known as VSC, is a Crips-based gang based out of Venice, Los Angeles, California.
Barriox13, B13 in short, is a street gang in South Los Angeles consisting of over 500 members, many of which are active. It is divided into West Side Barriox13 and East Side Barriox13 gang with all members loyal to the Barriox13 gang. It was established in the early 1980s near El Segundo Boulevard and Main St in South Los Angeles, California. The Original group of Barriox13 gang members began the gang for self-protection. It is a South Side (Sureno) gang loyal to the Mexican Mafia prison gang.
The US state of Georgia has seen a rise in the number of gangs over recent years, in the main focused on the illegal drug trade.
Crips and Bloods: Made in America is a documentary by Stacy Peralta that examines the rise of the Crips and Bloods, prominent gangs in America. The documentary focuses on the external factors that caused African-American youth to turn to gangs and questions the political and law enforcement response to the rise of gang culture.
The Grape Street Watts Crips is an African-American Crips subset based in the Watts neighborhood of Los Angeles. They're known for being the first original Crip set in Watts. The majority of the gang's members were located in the Jordan Downs Housing Project, and they were named after a north-south street in Watts near 103rd street.. The gang's rivalry with the Bounty Hunter Bloods has been described as being "the most violent and long lasting feud between two gangs that are in the Watts area."
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