California is tracking 42 'gang members' who are less than 1 year old

A database widely used by police departments in California was found to list babies among a pool of active gang members in the state.
(Image credit: REUTERS/Hyungwon Kang)

The state of California's "CalGang Criminal Intelligence System" is in theory a law enforcement database of known gang members, but an audit of the program released Thursday finds it is operating without adequate oversight, clear guidelines, or constitutional privacy protections.

Among other problems identified by the state auditor's report, the database lists 42 'gang members' whose listed ages would make them babies younger than one year old. Even more remarkably, 28 of those babies reportedly "admitt[ed] to being members" of gangs, suggesting California's crime syndicates recruit only the verbally precocious — or that the system is poorly monitored and full of typos.

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