Georgia Criminal Defense Blog

Drive By Shooting In Atlanta Suspected to be Gang Related Activity

Posted by Richard Lawson | Jun 28, 2019 | 0 Comments

Atlanta Police released reports about a drive-by shooting in Old Fourth Ward that occurred early in the morning on Thursday. Seven victims were shot as a result of the drive-by attack. Fortunately, all seven people, although critically injured, are expected to survive.

Police have “several significant leads in the case,” and according to reports, all suspects are believed to have gang affiliations.

As a Georgia Criminal Defense Attorney, I take on cases that involve all different types of crime. A confusing area of the law is when a crime involves other parties such as gang related activity. In today's post, I will outline the law behind criminal gang activity in the state of Georgia.

Criminal Gang Activity in Georgia

Criminal Gang Activity in Georgia is defined by the Georgia Code in O.C.G.A. §16-15-3 and §16-15-4. By law, criminal gang activity is defined as the commission, attempted commission, conspiracy to commit, or solicitation, coercion, or intimidation of another person to commit any of the following offenses on or after July 1, 2006: racketeering activity, rape, aggravated sexual battery, aiding or encouraging a child to escape from custody, criminal trespass or criminal damage to property, or any criminal offense in the State of Georgia, or in the United States that involves violence or possession or use of a weapon.

Furthermore, a criminal gang is defined as any organization, association, or group of three or more persons associated in fact, whether formal or informal, which engages in criminal gang activity. The existence of such organization, association, or group of individuals associated in fact may be established by evidence of a common name or common identifying signs, symbols, tattoos, graffiti, or attire or other distinguishing characteristics, including, but not limited to, common activities, customs, or behaviors.

The law also sets out offenses that are related to criminal gang activity. These offenses include:

  • Employing or associating with a criminal street gang to conduct or participate in criminal gang activity through the commission of a crime.
  • Committing an offense with the intent to obtain or earn membership or maintain or increase his or her status or position in a criminal street gang.
  • Acquiring or maintaining, directly or indirectly, through criminal gang activity or proceeds derived from any interest in or control of any real or personal property of any nature, including money.
  • Occupying a position of organizer, a supervisory position, or any other position of management or leadership with regard to a criminal street gang to engage in, directly or directly, or conspire to engage in criminal gang activity.
  • Causing, encouraging, soliciting, recruiting, or coercing another to become a member or associate of a criminal street gang, to participate in a criminal street gang, or to conduct or participate in criminal gang activity.
  • Communicating, directly or indirectly, with another any threat of injury or damage to the person or property of the other person or of any associate or relative of the other person with the intent to deter such person from assisting a member or associate of a criminal street gang to withdraw from such criminal street gang.
  • Communicating, directly or indirectly, with another any threat of injury or damage to the person or property of the other person or of any associate or relative of the other person with the intent to punish or retaliate against such person for refusing to or encouraging another to refuse to become or obtain the status of a member or associate of a criminal street gang.
  • Communicating, directly or indirectly, with another any threat of injury or damage to the person or property of the other person or of any associate or relative of the other person with the intent to punish or retaliate against such person for refusing to or encouraging another to refuse to become or obtain the status of a member of associate of a criminal street gang.
  • Communicating, directly or indirectly, with another any threat of injury or damage to the person or property of the other person or of any associate or relative of the other person with the intent to punish or retaliate against such person for providing statements or testimony against criminal street gangs or any criminal street gang member or associate.
  • Communicating, directly or indirectly, with another any threat of injury or damage to the person or property of the other person or of any associate or relative of the other person with the intent to intimidate, deter, or prevent such person from communicating to any law enforcement or corrections officer, prosecuting attorney, or judge information relating to criminal street gangs, criminal street gang members or associates, or criminal gang activity.

Any conduct that falls into the above situations is classified as a criminal gang related activity. If convicted, the conviction is a felony conviction, and the penalty can range from 5 to 20 years in prison.

Practice Note

If you or a loved one has been arrested for gang related activity or any other type of crime in the state of Georgia, contact our offices today. We are open seven days a week and offer free consultations with a Georgia Criminal Defense Lawyer. Call now.

About the Author

Richard Lawson

Richard Lawson has devoted his entire career to DUI Defense and Criminal Defense. As a former Prosecutor he knows both sides of your case. Put his experience to work for you. In DUI cases, you only have 30 days to protect your right to drive. Call now for immediate attention. We are available 7 days a week, 24 hours a day.

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