Gang Book details Chicago's criminal organizations

January 27, 2012

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(WBEZ/Robert Wildeboer)
The Chicago Crime Commission's 2012 Gang Book

People who want to know more about gangs in Chicago have a new resource, a 300-page book by the Chicago Crime Commission that details gang profiles, members, graffiti, tatoos and maps with current gang territories.

Former Police Superintendent Jody Weis is the president of the Chicago Crime Commission, which is publishing the updated Gang Book to educate the public. "It can be the police officer on the street that throws it in his car and just has it if he wants to look up some stuff real quick, he sees some unusual graffiti, maybe it's from a gang that he's not familiar with, it can also be that homeroom teacher who sits there and says, you know, most of you come from this community.  Let's talk about the gangs in that community," says Weis.

Weis says they've printed 7,000 copies and they hope to make it accessible online as well. He says the best estimates peg the number of gang members in Chicago somewhere around 100,000.