From Sandy Hook to Malpractice?

Undercounting gang influences

They “dropped” gang involvement from their “final model” because “only 3% of the sample…endorsed gang membership.” This doesn’t mean 3% were gang members, only that 3% “endorsed” it.

Their study ran from February 2010 to September 2011. In May 2011, NBC called Flint the most dangerous city in America, noting: “Flint police chief Alvern Lock stated late last year that he believed the city’s violence stemmed from drugs and gangs.” [emphasis added]

In May 2012, the FBI announced the arrests of 22 “Howard Boys” street gang members on Flint’s south side, for crimes including “committing murder in aid of racketeering, attempted murder in aid of racketeering and use of a firearm during a crime of violence, possession of a firearm by a felon, dealing in firearms without a license, and distributions of cocaine base.”

In May 2013, a member of Flint’s “Dayton Mafia” street gang was sentenced to 10 years for being a felon in possession of a firearm, and five years for “possessing a firearm to further a drug trafficking crime.” Two others were found guilty during the same trial. The Flint Journal report ended with a list of 10 other gang members “sentenced to jail time for their involvement in the gang.”

In June 2013, Flint Journal reported: “Two Flint brothers who were portrayed as the center of the violent Pierson Hood street gang have been sentenced to prison but could still face more time behind bars following an upcoming trial for a Mt. Morris Township double homicide.” Three other gang members also pled guilty for their roles in the murders, and dozens of others were charged.

Anecdotes don’t prove that all firearms injuries are gang-related, but FBI crime data show that gangs are more violent than the average criminal, and that the Pediatrics researchers selected the age group most likely to be involved in gang violence:

  • Gang members used a firearm in 93% of all gang-related homicides, compared to 65% for non-gang murders.
  • The median age of gang victims varied between 21 and 22 annually.
  • 64% of all gang murder victims were age 14 to 24, precisely matching the study’s target group.†

Gang members are more violent, and more likely to use firearms to commit violence, than the average criminal. Gang activity is common in Flint, Michigan. Gang violence sends more gunshot victims to the hospital.

This validates researchers’ findings that 37% of study subjects possessed guns “primarily for protection,” and why 85.5% experienced a “serious physical fight” during the six months prior to their hospital visit.