By Rebekah Rae. CREATED Jun 12, 2014
Omaha, NE - Police believe some of the recent gun violence is gang-related, however, they won't confirm which. In an effort to keep summer violence from heating up even more, they're reaching out to youth.
Authorities said what seems like a spike in violence is nothing out of the ordinary for a city the size of Omaha. What is alarming, the age children are joining street gangs.
"I'm dealing with little kids as young as eight, nine and ten years old," gang specialist Alberto Gonzales said children are not committing gun crimes but they are dealing drugs.
"Mom knows her son is dealing drugs and believe it or not, some of these kids are paying the bills cause dad is in prison so they keep that zip-lip." Gonzales said if he can't reach children at this stage, they'll likely grow to be Omaha's next violent offenders.
Gang Lieutenant Ken Kanger said he knows of more than ten gangs that are active and violent in Omaha. "In that you're talking another 15 to 20 individuals that cause the majority of those crimes."
Kanger said the it's the job of the gang unit to know everything there is to know about active gang members and with the help of the public, police are arresting more offenders. "In recent days, phone calls are being made about individuals that toss guns and providing us with information and help us from an investigative stand point."