Photo: Gangs in Chicago
Last year, 532 people were murdered in Chicago with much of that violence attributed to gang activity throughout the city. Chicago is home to many gangs including several of the largest Latino gangs.
Further strengthening the Latino gangs hold on their “home” territory is the formation of key alliances.
Currently the two rivaling alliances operating in Chicago are the People Nation (made up of the Latin Kings, Vice Lords, Black P. Stones, Latin Kings, Gaylords, South Side Popes, Insane Unknowns, Mickey Cobras, Four Corner Hustlers) and Folk Nation (made up of the Black Disciples, Gangster Disciples, La Raza Nation, Spanish Cobras, Latin Eagles, Maniac Latin Disciples, Simon City Royals, and Gangster Two-Six).
Find out more about Latino gangs in Chicago below.
Latino gangs in the People alliance:
The Latin Kings are comprised of 50,000 members with 20,000 members in Chicago alone, this gang was established in Chicago in the 1940s by a group of Puerto Ricans. Today, the Kings have operations in 39 states and can be recognized by the colors Black and Gold or a 5 or 3-point “sacred crown.” The highly organized LK are a part of the People Nation alliance.
Latino gangs in the Folks alliance:
Established in the early 1960s in the Humboldt Park neighborhood of Chicago, this group can be recognized by a cobra, raised pitchforks, and the initials “SC.”
La Raza Nation
Known as LRZ, the gang was founded in 1972 in Chicago. Their colors are green, white, and red, their symbols include the Mexican flag, cross, and a six point star.
Established in the area of Halsted and Addison in Chicago in the 1960, the group evolved into a street gang in the 1970s. Usually dressed in grey and black, the eagle head or an eagle in flight are their symbols.
Maniac Latin Disciples
Originally known as the Latin Scorpions, the Maniac Latin Disciples were established in 1966 in Humboldt Park. They are the second largest Latino street gang in Chicago. Their colors are black and blue and they can be identified by a backwards Swastika, heart with horns, or the initials “M.L.D.”
Established in the Little Village community in 1964, this group started as a baseball team which evolved into a gang following a turf war with the Latin Kings. Their symbols are a bunny with a right ear bent, hooded bunny, hearts, clubs, diamonds, and 6 point star. They can be recognized by the colors black and beige.
Photo Credits: Brian Bochenek, Gangink