79.4 F
Friday, September 22, 2023
HomeNewsThere IS a problem, Artesia

There IS a problem, Artesia

Related stories

‘Dogs blank ‘Cats in 2023 Homecoming Game, 44-0

Before a packed house of alumni Friday at Bulldog...

AHS Homecoming 2023: ‘Dogs vs. ‘Cats

With Friday's forecast calling for temperatures near 100 degrees,...

Ribbon Cutting- Pecos Valley Production

The Artesia Chamber of Commerce held a ribbon cutting...
Gang seminar highlights growing issue in city

Daily Press Staff Writer

On Monday night approximately 100 Artesians gathered at the Artesia Recreation Center to learn about gangs.

Speakers Ken Gonzales, of the U.S. Attorney’s Office, Tamera Marcantel, of the New Mexico Gang Task Force (NMGTF), Mike Baca, of the Bernalillo County Sheriff’s Office (BCSO), Luis Tafoya, of the BSCO, and Jeff Yalden, youth speaker and former host of the MTV hit series “Made,” defined the gang problem on a national, state and local level along with presenting possible solutions.

“Some folks would say ‘do we really have a gang problem?’ … I’ll tell you it’s hard to measure that unless you’re involved in it. But, in the opinion of the Artesia Police Department, if there’s one son, one daughter, one niece, one nephew, one grandchild whose life is touched by gang activity, we have a gang problem,” said Artesia Police Department Chief Don Raley. “We believe we need to always be aware of what’s going on … (and) by making you as grandparents, parents, aunts and uncles aware of what you are seeing you can intercede early on … and change what would have been a very negative situation.”

Gonzales reported in 2009, on a national level, there were approximately 1 million gang members claiming membership in some 20,000 gangs in the U.S. He said gangs are the primary street-level distributors of drugs in the U.S.

Marcantel followed, stating many gang members from neighboring southwestern states are drawn to New Mexico for its lack of gang legislation. She said New Mexico is the only state in the southwest that does not have some sort of gang-specific laws.

APD Sgt. Lindell Smith reported the APD has identified 31 separate gangs and over 350 gang members in Artesia. … For the rest of the story, subscribe in print and on the web.

Latest stories

Previous article
Next article