A few weeks ago we reported that a book on gangs in Chicago estimated that more than 2 per cent of the city’s residents were gang members.
Now comes word that gang symbols may have found their way into the winning entry of Chicago’s annual design contest for municipal registration stickers.
This afternoon, the city decided to pull the design, the Chicago Tribune’s John Byrne and Jeremy Gorner report.
A popular police blog discovered that the set of hands featured in the design appears to be “throwing up” the hand signal for the Maniac Latin Disciples gang, reports the Tribune.
That might seem a like stretch given the context, but the blog also discovered Facebook posts by the winning entrant, a 15-year-old high school student, dressed in gang-like garb (although not wearing MLD colours) and smoking marijuana. It also found the profile for someone very likely to be the boy’s father (who shares the boy’s name and is from Chicago) on Interpol’s “wanted” page.
“It’s not exactly, but it’s very close,” Jody Weis, the city’s former police superintendent and head of the Chicago Crime Commission, told the Tribune. “It’s too close to be a coincidence.”
The boy’s lawyer has denied the allegations.
Photo: City of Chicago
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