Posts

Leap on LAPD Gang Interventions

Jorja Leap, adjunct professor of social welfare and co-founder of the Watts Leadership Institute, was cited in a Los Angeles Daily News report on the city’s crime rate and gang interventions. Leap attended a meeting between South Los Angeles community members and Los Angeles Police Department Chief Michel Moore about an investigation finding that some officers falsified data about the city’s gangs. At least 20 officers have been accused of portraying innocent people as gang members in information submitted to the state’s CalGang database. At the meeting, Michel spoke about steps the department will take in light of the investigation. Leap commented that, given its history of brutality in the area, the LAPD struggles to maintain its credibility with the people of South Los Angeles. “Many residents still don’t trust LAPD,” Leap said. “This seems to confirm their worst feelings.”


 

Leap on LAPD Probe of Nipsey Hussle

The New York Times spoke with Adjunct Professor of Social Welfare Jorja Leap about the Los Angeles Police Department’s criminal probe of rapper Nipsey Hussle. After Hussle was slain in March, city leaders praised him as an artist, peacemaker and hero of South Los Angeles. They did not mention that the city had opened an investigation into Hussle’s business enterprises to determine whether they were hubs of gang activity. Now, investigators are under pressure to back away from the probe, even as they see Hussle’s killing as a sign of the gang violence they were looking into. “I think this goes to the complexity of the problem of gangs, gang membership and gang congregating,” Leap said. “Someone can be a hero, someone may also have a past. Neighborhoods can want zealously to have public safety and public gathering places. But for better or worse, that may or may not include gang members.”