Was juvenile sex used as a gang initiation?
With an investigation into an alleged incident in Dougherty County involving group sex in exchange for gang membership. They aren't releasing many details because the case involves juveniles. Officers say they don't see as much gang activity as the city of Albany but they know it's a fact of life that there's no escaping.
Early Tuesday morning, Dougherty County police officers responded to a call from Sarah Grider at her home on Pinson Road. "A mother had discovered five juvenile boys in her 14-year-old daughter's closet," said Capt. Jimmy Sexton.
Police say Grider interrupted her own daughter's initiation into a local gang. As shocking as the circumstances may seem, Dougherty County D.A. Greg Edwards says that it's unfortunately common. "Gangs have three distinct ways of initiating new persons into their gang," said Edwards.
The first method of initiation is being "blessed in" where a current member vouches for another. The second is being "jumped in" where gang members take turns beating a new recruit. And the third is "sexing in." "Literally, that means having sex with designated members of the gang or having sex for a period of time with the gang members," said Edwards.
According to Edwards, there is a method to the gang initiation madness. When a potential recruit allows members of the gang to abuse them in such a violent, physical way, it demonstrates that person's willingness to do whatever it takes to fit in with the gang lifestyle. "That demonstration of commitment is what is needed to assure the other members that you're willing to abide by the rules and regulations," he said. "We have been trying to make sure that the gang unit is moving forward, trying to educate kids before they get involved in this particular situation."
In sexing, female recruits are either required to have sex with other females or male members of an associate gang. And Edwards told us that although the sex may be consensual when it begins, the female often changes her mind - and that's when a gang initiation turns into a gang rape.