Gangs blamed for half of St. Louis gun crimes

ST. LOUIS (AP) — A University of Missouri-St. Louis criminologist says half of the gun crimes committed in St. Louis are gang-related.

Associate professor of criminology Beth Huebner told KMOX Radio (http://cbsloc.al/YVQAT0 ) that there are about 2,000 gang members in the St. Louis police gang database. She says that number understates the problem because it does not include juveniles, and the average gang member is 13 to 16 years old.

Huebner says that gang members often share guns. The willingness to use them in crimes is heightened by peer pressure and the immaturity of teenage gang members who are carrying the weapons.

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