Violent Crime:

Federal Law Enforcement Assistance in Fighting Los Angeles Gang Violence

GGD-96-150: Published: Sep 6, 1996. Publicly Released: Sep 6, 1996.

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GAO reviewed how the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and other federal agencies worked with local law enforcement agencies to target gangs in the Los Angeles metropolitan area.

GAO found that: (1) FBI provided assistance to local law enforcement in the Los Angeles area through the Los Angeles Metropolitan Task Force on Violent Crime; (2) federal assistance provided through the task force included the use of federal laws and authority not otherwise available to local law enforcement, personnel, overtime pay, office space, various types of equipment, and funding for law enforcement activities; (3) local law enforcement officials believed that the task force enhanced their ability to conduct long-term, proactive investigations into entire gangs rather than short-term, reactive investigations; (4) local law enforcement officers believed that, overall, federal assistance helped to reduce gang violence; and (5) local law enforcement officers believed that the number of FBI agents assigned to the task force was insufficient, agent turnover hindered operations, and a lack of cellular telephones hindered operations.

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