New Article on Gang Member Mobility Patterns by Dr. Matthew Valasik Published in Journal Of Criminal Justice

Dr. Matthew Valasik with Dr. Jason Gravel, Temple University, Dr. George E. Tita, University of California, Irvine, Dr. P. Jeffrey Brantingham, University of California, Los Angeles, and Dr. Elizabeth Griffiths, Rutgers University, recently published “Territory, residency, and routine activities: A typology of gang member mobility patterns with implications for place-based interventions” in the Journal of Criminal Justice. The study examines the mobility and activity patterns of gang members to better understand how place-based interventions can be more effectively administered. The authors’ construct a unique spatial typology based on a gang member’s claimed turf, their residence, and where they are stopped by law enforcement. The article finds that the mobility patterns of gang members is more varied than predicted by the literature. That is, gang members do not just reside and hang out within their gang’s claimed turf or simply just commute from their residence back to their gang’s territory to hang out. In fact, a good deal of gang member’ time is spent in other spaces not anticipated by the extant literature. Results suggest that it is valuable to not solely rely on where gang members sleep at night, their primary residence, when establishing place-based interventions and should account for their activity spaces, including patterns of mobility, if they are to be effective at disrupting gang-related activity.