Gangs: Who's winning the battle in Duncan?

DUNCAN--Gang members are making their mark in Duncan.  Police say they're seeing new turf tagging; a possible sign gang members are still there.  We first told you at the beginning of the year that some of Lawton's gang influence was spreading east.

Since then, Duncan Police have sprung into action.  They actively search out areas where members hang out and take pictures of gang graffiti.  They're also give regular presentations that show the public how gangs operate and recruit members.

Detectives put the names of gang members into a database, and every week, officers get a printout of current gang members in the area.  All officers on the police force are told what area to patrol and who to look for.  "We're trying to be as proactive as possible," said Duncan Detective John Byers.  "We take action whenever we get tips about graffiti or our officers on the street hear gang names.  We're not going to look the other way at all.  We're not going to sit back and say, 'we don't have a gang problem'."

Police say gangs are only as strong as a community allows them to be and one way you can help is report and call in any illegal activity you see.   Detective Byers says when shots are fired in a neighborhood, for example, neighbors assume that since it was loud enough for several people to hear, that someone else will call police.  Often, it turns out, that no one calls.  Duncan police say If you know of any gang, drug or any other criminal activity, call them.

You can reach the Duncan Police Department at 470-2092 or 252-INFO.