Major Gangs


Information below provided by: Detective Veltre and East Coast Gang Investigators Association

Source: New York Post


The Bloods gang is one of the largest street gangs in the United States. The Bloods originated in Los Angeles, California. Bloods stands for Brotherly Love Overcomes Depression and Destruction. They initiate each other into the gang with a 31-second beat in. Their rival gang is the Crips. 

Source: Wallpaper Safari


The Crips started in 1969 in Los Angeles, California, but the gang is now widespread throughout the United States. Crip stands for Community Revolution in Progress. They have a 60-second beat-in for initiation. Their rival gang is the Bloods. 

Source: Rapid City Journal


The Latin Kings are the largest Hispanic gang in the United States. They originated in Chicago in the 1940s. They are known as the Almighty King Nation or the Almighty King and Queen Nation (ALKQN). They love royalty and king imagery. They have a manifesto of rules and a code of conduct. They refer to 360 degrees strong, standing for knowledge, respect, and understanding. 

Source: East Coast Gang Investigators Association


MS-13 was started by Salvadorian members in Los Angeles, California and then branched out, including to El Salvador. La Mara stands for gang and Salva stands for Salvadorian. The number 13 was adopted when they aligned with the Surenos, to demonstrate alliance with the Mexican Mafia. They require a 13-second beat in for initiation. 

Source: Meredith Kohut, The New York Times