Local activist looks back at Lincoln's gang history - News, Weather and Sports for Lincoln, NE; KLKNTV.com

Local activist looks back at Lincoln's gang history

Posted: Updated:

By: Bill Schammert
bschammert@klkntv.com

It may seem like gang violence is on the rise, but one local activist says the violence is nowhere near what it used to be.

Lincoln police say two rival gang members are dead and more are behind bars after several unrelated incidents this weekend.

"We are bound together as a community," Police Chief Jim Peschong said in a news conference on Monday. "We need to ensure that gangs do not get a foothold in our comm unties."

Reverend Don Coleman remembers when gangs first game to Lincoln.  He says it was in 1993 as gangs were moving from West to East, after they had already moved into Omaha.  

He had retired from the military on a Friday, three days later he was asked to start the Lincoln chapter of M.A.D DADS.

"Kids were 10 or 12 years old, running around because their parents didn't care," Rev. Coleman remembers. "Found a lot of kids that were wannabe's, found a lot of kids that were starting out on drugs."

He and a large group of volunteers began combing the streets; maintaining a presence.  They started by removing graffiti and hosting several after school events to keep kids away from violence and drugs.

"There was and is a lot of gang presence, but you have to give a lot of accolades to the police department because they jumped on this thing right away."

The walls of M.A.D DADS in northeast Lincoln are lined with two decades of memories, and of course there's the bikes.

Right now, more than 300 bikes are ready to be worked on for the 15th annual holiday bicycle program.  Rev. Coleman says it started as a way to give something to the kids and keep in touch with at-risk youth.

When asked about how gang activity has changed, Rev. Coleman was quick to respond.

"So much for the better, so much for the better.  We have better resources and more safe houses now."

M.A.D. DADS is also one of several organizations with rec centers open after school for children to play and hangout.  But, like many non-profits they're in need of your help.

If you'd like to learn more, click here.

  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • Gun shots near 18th and G Streets

    Gun shots near 18th and G Streets

    Lincoln Police say that five to six gunshots were heard near the 1800 block of G Street. Witnesses say they heard loud shouting between a group of people at Lewis Field, followed by the firing of the weapon, a little before midnight Saturday. When Lincoln Police arrived they found a couple of shell casings,  There were no reported injuries and LPD is still investigating the shooting. More >>
    Lincoln Police say that five to six gunshots were heard near the 1800 block of G Street. Witnesses say they heard loud shouting between a group of people at Lewis Field, followed by the firing of the weapon, a little before midnight Saturday. When Lincoln Police arrived they found a couple of shell casings,  There were no reported injuries and LPD is still investigating the shooting. More >>
  • Overnight robbery at residence

    Overnight robbery at residence

    Lincoln Police are investigating a robbery that occurred around 11 p.m. Saturday. They say it happened on the 2200 block of Holdrege. The victim, a 55-year-old man says  four males broke into his apartment, one struck with a handgun in the head. The suspects then took his wallet, cellphone and some cash. LPD also say that they ransacked his apartment. The four men then took the victim outside and apologized to him, saying they had the wrong residence. The 55-year-old man had o...

    More >>

    Lincoln Police are investigating a robbery that occurred around 11 p.m. Saturday. They say it happened on the 2200 block of Holdrege. The victim, a 55-year-old man says  four males broke into his apartment, one struck with a handgun in the head. The suspects then took his wallet, cellphone and some cash. LPD also say that they ransacked his apartment. The four men then took the victim outside and apologized to him, saying they had the wrong residence. The 55-year-old man had o...

    More >>
  • Local refugee opens Turkish sweets bakery

    Local refugee opens Turkish sweets bakery

    There's a sweet aroma floating out of Safwan Qaedi's little Turkish bakery near 27th and O.  

    More >>

    There's a sweet aroma floating out of Safwan Qaedi's little Turkish bakery near 27th and O.  

    More >>
Powered by Frankly
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2017 KLKN. All Rights Reserved.
For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy, and Terms of Service, and Ad Choices.