TAPD: Gangs behind increase in violent crime in city - KSLA News 12 Shreveport, Louisiana News Weather & Sports

TAPD: Gangs behind increase in violent crime in city

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TEXARKANA, AR (KSLA) -

Police in Texarkana, Arkansas say gang violence is getting out of control, and they are cracking down hard.

Officers say a YouTube video is evidence of the problem.

"We would definitely agree we do have a gang issue going on at this time," says Sgt. Chris Rankin of the Texarkana, Arkansas Police Department.

That was Rankin earlier this month, following the  shooting of a 14-year-old Texarkana teenager. She was inside an apartment when shots were fired outside. At least one bullet went through the window hitting the girl.

Thursday, police say they identified two alleged gangs, one on the Arkansas side of the city and the other on the Texas side.

Police say a Youtube video shows the city has a gang issue. The video is written and performed by Texarkana native Damion White.

"Yeah, it's gangs here. There are gangs in every city."

White says his video is not meant to glorify gangs but to try to bring peace.

"We just need to come together, you know, get this money, you know. Stop beefing with each other, killing each other. It will be a way better place to live," he says.

In the shooting that injured the 14-year-old, police say 11 arrests have been made on suspected gang members. They say they have warrants for nine others.

"We have got to see it end, man, because, if we don't, we will be living in a war zone. I might as well go back overseas in Afghanistan and live," White says.

A decade ago, Texarkana's gang problem was brought to a halt. After 41 gang leaders were arrested and convicted, police are hoping for a similar resolution.

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