San Jose, California, often dubbed as the “Capital of Silicon Valley,” is known for its thriving tech industry, cultural diversity, and pleasant climate. However, beneath its picturesque surface lies a complex issue that the city has been grappling with for decades: crime rates, particularly related to gang activity. In this article, we will delve into the crime rates in San Jose and explore the significant influence of gangs on the city’s safety and security.

The Crime Landscape

San Jose, like many major metropolitan areas, faces the challenge of managing crime effectively. To understand the situation comprehensively, it’s essential to break down the types of crimes prevalent in the city:

  1. Violent Crimes: These include offenses such as homicides, aggravated assaults, robberies, and sexual assaults. Violent crimes can have a profound impact on a community’s sense of safety.
  2. Property Crimes: This category encompasses burglary, theft, and motor vehicle theft. Property crimes, while less physically harmful than violent crimes, can disrupt people’s lives and erode their trust in the community’s safety.
  3. Gang-Related Crimes: The presence of gangs significantly contributes to crime rates in San Jose. These include activities like drug trafficking, extortion, and vandalism, often associated with gang-related violence.

Understanding the Gang Problem

Gangs have a long history in San Jose, with roots dating back to the mid-20th century. The city’s large and diverse population, coupled with socioeconomic disparities, has made it a breeding ground for gang activity. Several factors contribute to the perpetuation of gangs in San Jose:

  1. Socioeconomic Challenges: Certain neighborhoods in San Jose face economic disadvantages, limited access to quality education, and few job opportunities. These conditions create an environment where young people may be drawn into gangs as an alternative to better prospects.
  2. Drug Trade: The drug trade has been a major source of income for many gangs. San Jose’s proximity to drug trafficking routes and its affluent population make it an attractive market for illicit drug sales.
  3. Recruitment: Gangs actively recruit new members, often targeting vulnerable youth who are seeking a sense of belonging or identity.

Crime Rates and Gang Influence

The influence of gangs on crime rates in San Jose cannot be understated. Gang-related crimes often account for a significant portion of the city’s violent and property crimes. These crimes can be particularly brutal and may involve firearms and other weapons, posing a severe threat to public safety.

  1. Homicides: Gang-related homicides have been a persistent issue in San Jose. These murders often result from territorial disputes, drug-related conflicts, or personal vendettas, and they can have a chilling effect on communities.
  2. Drug Trade: Gangs are deeply involved in the drug trade, leading to an increase in drug-related crimes. This includes not only drug trafficking but also drug-related violence and overdose deaths.
  3. Property Crimes: Gangs may engage in property crimes as a means of generating income to support their activities. Burglaries, thefts, and vandalism can disrupt communities and damage the city’s reputation.

Community Responses

The city of San Jose has taken several measures to address the issue of gang-related crime. These include:

  1. Law Enforcement Efforts: Local law enforcement agencies collaborate with federal partners to investigate and prosecute gang-related activities. Strategies include community policing, intelligence gathering, and targeted enforcement.
  2. Intervention Programs: Various community-based organizations work to provide alternatives for at-risk youth. These programs offer counseling, education, and job training to help divert young people away from gang involvement.
  3. Education and Awareness: Public awareness campaigns aim to educate the community about the dangers of gangs and how to report gang-related activities.


San Jose’s struggle with crime rates, particularly those influenced by gangs, is a multifaceted challenge. Addressing this issue requires a holistic approach, combining law enforcement efforts with community-based interventions and educational initiatives. While the city has made strides in tackling gang-related crime, continued vigilance and investment in resources are crucial to fostering a safer and more vibrant community for all residents of San Jose.

List of Norteno Gangs


1. East Side Hoods (King and Tully)
2. El Hoyo Palmas (Story to Waverly going north to south and 101 Freeway to Capitol going west to east)
3. Varrio Meadow Fair (Rigoletto to Aborn going north to south and King to Capitol going west to east)
4. Varrio Norte Catorce (Flannigan to Alrich going north to south and Fontaine to King going west to east)
5. Calonia Maravilla (Capitol Park area)
– Capitol Park Locos
– Varrio Capitol Park
6. Barrio East Side (McKee to Alum Rock going north to south and Capitol to White going west to east)
7. Varrio 33rd (S.33rd St., between Alum Rock and San Antonio)
8. Varrio Catorce Locos (St. James St. to Beverly Blvd. going north to south and King to Basch going west to east)
9. Jackson Kings (Villa de Guadalupe apartments on Alum Rock, between Jackson and Sunset)
10. Varrio 95 (Mt. Pleasent area)
11. Barrio Rio Seco (Story to Mt. Vista going north to south and White to Clayton going West to east)
12. Varrio East Hills (Rose to Woodhaven going north to south and White to Dale going west to east)
13. Varrio Lochridge Locos (Lochridge Dr.)
14. Roosevelt Park Locos (Roosevelt Park area)
15. Las Casitas Gang (Las Casitas apartments on N. Jackson)
16. Varrio Monte Alban (Monte Alban apartments on Santee Dr.)
17. M – Street (McGlaughlin Ave.)
18. Varrio Norte Grande (Golf to Lucian going north to south and White to Gridley going west to east)
19. Varrio Fenton Locos (Fenton Dr.)
20. Cold Blooded Gangsters (Bambi to Story going north to south and Sunset to Jackson going west to east)
21. Verde Block (El Rancho Verde Dr.)
22. East Bound Mob (Florence Dr.)
23. Barrio True Nortenos (Westboro Dr.)
24. Chicano Pride Gangsters (All over ESSJ)
25. Varrio Bloody Waters (All over ESSJ)
26. Barrio Mas Locos (Penitencia Creek to Golf going north to south and Capitol to White going west to east)
27. McGlaughlin Parke Gangsters (McGlaughlin Park area)
28. Just Bangin Fourteen (All over ESSJ)
29. New Generation Nortenos (All over ESSJ)
30. Varrio Mas Chingon (Sylvia Dr.)
31. Park Side Mob (Mayfair Park area)
32. Los Latin Locos (All over ESSJ)


33. Varrio Norteno Homeboys (Taylor to Washington going north to south and N. 9th to N. 15th going west to east)
34. Varrio North Side (Hedding to Mission going north to south and N. 13th to N. 17th going west to east)
35. San Jo Grande (Washington to St. John going north to south and N. 9th to N. 13th going west to east)
36. Julian Street Posse (N. 6th and Julian)
37. Varrio 12th St. (S. 12th St., between Keyes and Martha)
38. Barrio Gran Tiera (S. 8th and Martha)
39. Varrio San Jo (All over NSSJ)
40. Norteno Pride Soldiers (N. Capitol and Cropley)


41. Varrio Horse Shoe (William to Jerome going north to south and Harrison to 87 Freeway going west to east)
42. West Side Mob (Alma Ave., W. San Carlos St.)
– Varrio Alma Locos
– San Carlos Boys


43. Varrio Feldspar Gangsters (Feldspar Dr.)
44. Varrio Hoffman Locos (Hoffman Dr.)
45. 4G’s (400 Block on Seven Trees Blvd.)
46. Roundtable Boys (Roundtable Dr.)
47. Trailor Park Boys (Four Seasons Trailor Park on Monterey Rd.)
48. Nortenos Por Vida (85 Freeway to Soquel going north to south and Indian to Snell going west to east)
49. Varrio Azteca Nortenos (Calero to Santa Teresa going north to south and Indian to Blossom going west to east)
50. Norteno Brothers (All over SSSJ)
51. Varrio Norteno Pride (Seventrees area)
52. Mother Fuckin Gangsters (Southside Dr.)
53. Big San Jo Neros (All over SSSJ)

Old norteno gangs of San Jose that are no longer around.


1. Cholo Town (Casa Blanca apartments on White Rd.)
2. Varrio Tiera Vista (East Hills Dr.)
3. Sal Si Puedes (King and Virginia)
4. Los Banditos (King and Story)
5. Little Norteno Locos (All over ESSJ)
6. East Side Locos (Nancy Ln.)
7. East Side Nortenos (White and Alum Rock)
8. Latin Lords (Jackson Ave.)
9. Loco Norteno Varrio (All over ESSJ)
10. East Side Familia (Alum Rock and King)


11. Vicky’s Town (Seven Trees area)
12. South Side Gangsters (Southside Dr.)


13. Varrio Libre (Alma and Pamona)
14. Brown Pride Homeboys (Buena Vista Dr.)
15. Ravenscourt Familia (Ravenscourt Ave.)


16. Down Town Nortenos (all over NSSJ)
17. Lomas (19th and Santa Clara)

Asian Gangs

Other Gangs

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