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7 December 2017, 08:31
If you think someone you know might have fallen into a gang; Northants Police say you've got to do something about it; their life could depend on it.
The force warns gang culture can and does lead to violence and death; and at least it could lead to getting a criminal record and a prison sentence.
A criminal record can affect people for the rest of their lives – their chances of getting a job, getting on some courses and travelling to certain countries.
The new warning is asking if you've noticed a change in someone you know?
Most teenagers don’t commit crimes or get involved in gangs but it’s important to be aware of the signs that someone you know might be. These can include -
:: Not hanging around with their usual friends
:: Coming home late or staying out more than usual
:: Being secretive and withdrawn
:: Hanging around with different people
:: Having unexplained injuries
:: Taking drugs
:: Carrying weapons
:: Skipping school
:: Talking differently – for example using new slang words
:: Suddenly has lots of cash; buying expensive phones etc
:: Is wearing different and more expensive clothes
:: Gun shaped accessories
If you’re concerned about someone you know, the best thing to do is report it to someone rather than getting involved yourself.
Even if their behaviour turns out to be for a different reason, they can then be offered support and help. If they are involved in a gang, you could be saving their life or stopping it being ruined.