Legitimated Oppression Academic Article uri icon


  • This article explores the gang suppression model and how it becomes practiced in the profiling and interactions between police and inner-city Mexican Americans. I conducted this research formally over five years in two southwestern citiesDenver, Colorado, and Ogden, Utahand informally for fourteen years by the researcher's experience as an ex-gang member. I suggest that stereotyping Mexican American communities as gang infested and equating gangs as synonymous with crime allows for differential policing that no longer emphasizes criminal acts, but rather perpetual criminal people. Gang enforcement is over-inclusive and embedded with practices that create opportunities for abuse of authority.

published proceedings

  • Journal of Contemporary Ethnography

author list (cited authors)

  • Durn, R. J.

publication date

  • January 1, 2009 11:11 AM