ABOUT THIS WEBSITE

This website to designed to reach youth and their parents, teachers, and concerned citizens who want to stop the flow of our youth into the criminal justice system.  It’s not enough to continue to talk about what is happening.  We must take action to cause a change.  What are you willing to do to make a change.  We have all stated how pitiful and heartbreaking it is to watch our kids slide into that downward spiral of the prison system.  But how many of us have taken steps to do something about it?  Have you attended a seminar, workshop, or any type meeting addressing this problem?  Have you contributed money or time to help those who are out there trying to make a difference? Have you purchased one of the powerful crime-prevention books to share with a young person that you want to help keep on the right path?  Get you copy at www.kingdompublications.net.

If not, we are asking you to take a stand today.  Become a volunteer, contribute money, buy a book, or schedule a seminar for young people in your school, church or organization.  Keeping kids out of prison is everybody’s business.

WHY GANG ACTIVITY IS ON THE RISE

Statistics indicates that gang and gang violence amongst children and adults is on the rise.  Especially in urban areas where there are many businesses and poverty is rampant.  For youth, there is often a disconnect between the child and the family.  For adults, there is a myriad of reasons.

Our top adverse contender is peer pressure, followed by; the need to be accepted; feeling like an outcast; and a need for security.

Peer Pressure

Peer pressure is nothing more than the undue influence exerted by a peer group upon an individual to cause them to change or modify their beliefs, attitude or behavior in conformity with the group.  For the youth, this could mean something as simple as changing the way they dress to as extreme as taking a life.

Gangs use strength in numbers to gain even greater numbers convincing others of their code.  Youngsters find gangs relatively easy to enter but extremely hard to escape.  The tasks the new recruit is given is simple, at first, but becomes more difficult as time goes by.  Task such as fighting and stealing eventually turn to robbery and murder.  Before he realizes it, he is hopelessly lost in a web of violence.  His pleas for help and escape from the group often fall on deaf ears.

Need To Be Accepted

We all  come from a family and have a need to belong.  Within the family we give and receive as part of the group dynamic.  When we have a need that we feel is not being met in the group, we turn to those outside the group.  With children, there is no realization that acceptance by a gang means acceptance for the goals of the gang and not the individual.

Positive groups like the Boy Scouts or Cub Scouts are everywhere.  Their goal is to benefit the group and the members.  Gangs, on the other hand, abuse society, individuals and ultimately the gang itself.  Notwithstanding, gangs do offer acceptance to its members.  The difference is that in gangs the more heinous the behavior, the greater the reward  and respect for the perpetrator.

Feeling Like An Outcast

When we are children our parents are our world.  Whatever they say is correct and we learn from them.  As we age and form our own opinions, conflict arises within us.  By the time we are teenagers, we think our opinion is more relevant than our parents.  We don’t realize our parents are doing the best they can, and we didn’t come with a with a child-rearing manual.

Never the less we want our voice heard and if parents don’t listen, we seek out those who will.  We have choices and they determine whether we stay connected to or disconnect from our family.  If there is an available gang that seems to think the way we do, we’re in. We are constantly seeking to meet the need to belong.

Need For Security

As a child, we obtain virtually everything from our parents.  As we age, we slowly start to depend on others to meet our needs.  The need for companionship and group dynamics may start to diminish at home.  This is a normal cycle of life and is expected.  At home, however, we have the basics like food, clothing, security and shelter.  A child often thinks that regardless of what happens, when he gets home mom or dad will take care of it.  As we mature, we start to feel a need to find security in other people.  And therein lies part of the problem.

The biggest problem with a quest for security is determining what type to seek.  Home gives you the type of security that generally works if you are doing the right thing.  Gangs give you security which is active and aggressive regardless of your behavior as long as it is not against another member.

Depending on our home situation the gang type of all-encompassing security can be very attractive.  Imagine that regardless of what you do, or to whom it is done, you have backup; you are always right.  This adverse lifestyle with few rules is just the enticement for leaving home and joining the gang.  It all seems so easy until you realize that you can’t just change your mind and walk away.  If you try it, what the gang did to others, it will do to you.  And so, you security becomes your insecurity, and you realize you are in big trouble.

What’s your take on why gangs are on the rise?  Do you feel more can be done at home to keep children out of gangs?  Do you think parents are often the cause of children leaving to join gangs?

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WHAT TO DO WHEN STOPPED BY THE POLICE.

WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW WHEN STOPPED BY THE POLICE

  1. YOU HAVE THE RIGHT TO REMAIN SILENT when questioned by the police. However, you are required to give the police your name when requested.  Be sure to give you correct name and your correct date of birth.  It is a crime to give the police a false name of false date of birth.  You are not required to give any other information.  If you have been arrested, (you are not free to leave) and they continue to question you after you have given your name, you should say, “I don’t want to answer any more questions without an attorney.”  At that point, they should stop all questions.
  1. YOU DO NOT HAVE TO CONSENT TO A SEARCH by the police. You have a right to say “No” if the police ask for your consent to search you or your vehicle.  You should say, “No, I do not give my consent to search me or my vehicle.”  If they perform the search anyway, don’t resist.  Give all the details to your attorney.  The police have a right to detain you for a reasonable amount of time if they think a crime has been committed.  For example, if they have probable cause to believe there are drugs in the vehicle, they can detain you until a drug sniffing dog is brought to sniff the vehicle. If no drugs are present, you should be free to leave.

NOTE:  The police do not need your consent if the vehicle has been reported stolen.  This is true even if you didn’t know the vehicle had been reported stolen.

  1. YOU HAVE THE RIGHT TO HAVE AN ATTORNEY if you are accused of a crime. If you can’t afford an attorney, one will be appointed for you by the court.  Wait until you have an attorney before you answer any questions.
  1. DO NOT ARGUE OR FIGHT WITH THE POLICE if you are given a ticket or arrested, even if you think the police officer is wrong.  Accept the ticket or submit to the arrest and present your side in court.   Be sure to give your attorney all the details.

STRAYING FROM THE PATH OF RIGHTEOUSNESS

When you are walking down the right path, and someone suggest that you stray from that path, you should stick with what you desire rather than following “bad” advice.  Far too many young people are in prison today because they allowed someone else to think for them.  You know the difference between right and wrong; between legal and illegal activity.  Train yourself to believe that your thoughts and ideas are the best thoughts and ideas when it involves your life and future.

Tommy was young man who seemed to have a bright future.  He landed a job with Handy Mart right out of high school.  He had worked there two years and received two promotions when his friends began insisting that he party with them.  His manager loved his work and attitude and his future with the company looked bright.  His friends kept asking him to go out with them on Friday night even though they knew he worked on Saturdays.  They partied hard and stayed out really late.  Tommy began to arrive for work late.  Eventually he began to miss work on Saturdays.  The manager counseled Tommy and his work schedule improved for a short time.  But Tommy’s friends woud not let up.  Pretty soon Tommy was back in his old habit of missing work or arriving late.  The manager finally called Tommy in and told him that he had become a different person in the last few months.  He gave Tommy a chance to resign rather than fire him from the job.  Tommy’s friends moved on and no longer spent every weekend with him. Tommy realized too late that he had strayed from the path of how he knew an employee was supposed to conduct himself.  It took him years to find another job with pay and benefits comparable to his job at Handy Mart.  This time he vowed that he would not allow someone else to pull him off that path he knew was right for him.

Tommy learned the hard way.  You can learn from his mistake.  today is the day to decide to get on the path of righteousness and stay on it.

 

WATCHDOGS FOR JUSTICE

WHO ARE WE?

We are criminal defense attorneys concerned about the youth in our community. We have served as advocates for juveniles in the Juvenile court system, in delinquency and deprivation cases, and we are appalled by the number of young people entering the criminal justice system. Watchdogs for Justice was formed for the express purpose of doing something about that.

WHAT DO WE DO?

Conduct interactive seminars in schools, libraries, churches, and other places where we find young people. We provide them with information regarding the inner workings of the criminal justice system, we have the opportunity to:

* Offer tips on how to avoid entering the system

* Assist those who have been adversely impacted by the judicial system.

* Redirect the path of those who would most likely be adversely impacted by the judicial system in the future.

* Educate the community about pitfalls that can land our young people in jail or prison for many years.

WHO DO WE HELP?

Our target group is youth between the ages of 9 -19 years of age.

HOW YOU CAN HELP?

Schedule a seminar for the young people in your community. Call us at 678-412-2299. Together, we can reduce the number of young people entering the system.

CONTACT INFO

Call 678-412-2299

Watchdogs for Justice

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http://www.watchdogS507.wordpress.com

 

 

COMMUNITY SEMINAR

Watchdogs conducted its 7th annual crime prevention seminar at the Wesley Chapel Library on march 12, 2016.  There was a great turnout of young people and their parents.

It takes all of us together to stop the flow of our young people into the criminal justice system.  Everyone can do something.  So, roll up your sleeves and come join us.  The child you keep out of the system may be your own, or a family member or a member of your community.  Every time a child goes to prison, it cause harm to all of us.  We must take a stand today and turn the tide in the other direction.  Our children are our future.