Guessing Where Gangs Will Grapple


California street gangs stage fights whose locations can be accurately predicted using the same algorithm anthropologists use to predict where lions and hyenas will fight in the wild to protect their territories. A UCLA researcher, using the standard "Lotka-Volterra" equation on 13 equal-sized criminal gangs in the Boyle Heights neighborhood in East Los Angeles, produced a table of probabilities showing how far from each gang's border any fights were likely to be. From 1999-2002, the formula correctly showed about 58 percent of shootings were within 0.2 miles of the border, 83 percent within 0.4 miles and 97 percent within 1 mile.

No comments on this story | Add your comment
Please log in or register to add your comment
Download our dojax app
What do you think? Browse
What was the 'Best Scandal' in Northeast Florida over the past year?
The Best of Jax ballot released on July 30 will ask this question and many more