L.A.'s black population is booming, and Central Avenue is its nexus, home to black-owned businesses and a thriving jazz and R&B music scene.

The newly named "South Central" is the only district in the city where African Americans can own property. Racially restrictive housing covenants, enforced by the law, police authorities and white homeowners, keep L.A.'s schools and communities strictly segregated and deny people of color the right to home ownership.

Public Housing initially built for war industry employees, and planned with racial integration in mind, begin to populate the South L.A. neighborhood of Watts. Larger housing complexes, such as Imperial Courts and Jordan Downs (both built in 1944), have many African Americans living in them.

Following the Watts Riots in 1965, Black street clubs in South L.A. begin to unite and organize politically against police brutality. The Black Power Movement gains strength nationally, and violent gang activity decreases in L.A., as former members of gangs like the Slauson's joined the Black Panther Party (BPP), the US Organization and other socially conscious groups.

In the early 1970's South Central Los Angeles enters a period of economic decline.


There are different philosophies on the history of the Crips. The Avenue Boys (or the Avenues) was a gang of older youths who had been active since the early 1960's. Raymond Washington, Jimel Barnes, and several other Black youths looked-up to and admired the Avenue Boys.

Washington eventually separated from the Avenue Boys, moved to West Los Angeles and attended Washington High School. He developed a new following, and to distinguish themselves from other street gangs, members wore blue handkerchiefs, blue sweatshirts, Levi's, tennis shoes and baseball caps. Washington reportedly always walked with a cane. They attempted to emulate the older gang members. Stanley "Tookie" Williams, who was the leader of the Avalon Park Gangsters joined after meeting up with Raymond and Jimel Barnes. Raymond Washington formed the Eastside Crips, and Stanley Williams formed the Westside Crips. The Cribs adopted a distinctive manner of dress, possibly emulating the Black Panthers by wearing black leather jackets. In addition to their jackets, they often walked with canes, and wore an earring in their left ear lobe.

The Cribs ventured into their own criminal behavior, committing robberies and assaults. Crip folklore suggests that the term "Crib" evolved into "Crip" in the following manner; in 1971, several Crib members assaulted a group of elderly Japanese women who described their assailants to police as "young cripples" that carried canes. These young cripples were the Cribs, but a local newspaper and the Los Angeles Police Department picked up on this description and began referring to this group "Crips."

Crip factions began to spread throughout the Los Angeles area, and at the beginning of the 1980's, Crip on Crip warfare reached new heights. The Rollin 60's and the Eight Trey Gangster Crips accounted for over 200 deaths within their gang structures. When "rock" or "crack" cocaine hit the streets in the 1980's, Crip gangs began to migrate to several Southern states like Texas, Louisiana, and Arkansas. Another reason these Los Angeles gangs went to these areas, was family. Traditionally African-American families left these Southern states moving to California for a better life.

Crips are identified by blue. The Santana Blocc Crips wear black, Grape

Street Watts Crips wear purple, and the Hoover Criminals represent with orange. Original Hoover's still wear blue.

What is unique about West Coast Crips is they do not recognize East Coast factions. They classify them as fake.

In 2019 several Crip sets "ride" with Blood factions in attempts to make money.

Roll’in 40’s graffiti in Los Angeles, CA


Many of the West Coast Crip sets are emulated on the East Coast:

The Roll'in 60's is the Largest Crip set in the city of Los Angeles, CA. They are also the most copied Crip set across the United States. They are part of the Neighborhood Crip Nation, which encompasses all Roll'in Crip sets.

This is Roll’in 60’s Crip graffiti. Above the 60 is Neighbors. RSC stands for Roll’in Sixties Crips. Arrow claims territory. Hand Sign is on the left.

Grape Street Watts Crips:

The Grape Street Watts Crips control Jordan Downs Public Housing in Watts, California. They are only of the few Los Angeles Crip gangs that uses a symbol; a bunch of grapes. They are very well entrenched in the State of Tennessee, and Atlanta, GA.

They wear purple and represent with the Colorado Rockies and Los Angeles Lakers paraphernalia.

Grape Street hand sign “G” to the left

The Hoover Crips have two factions. The older members still call themselves Crip and flag blue. However, the younger factions call themselves criminals and flag orange. The Hoover factions are also copied across the United States. 

Eight Trey (83) and Seven Four criminal graffiti. W/S means they are West of Interstate 110. The Hoover hand sign. The “VER” means Varrio and East killers, 18th Street and East Coast Crips.
“Misty” is a Hoover Criminal. Notice her orange fingernails, and Hoovers hand sign

East Coast Crips are different from their West Coast counterparts. The use Chicago FOLK Nation gang symbols, like the Six Point Star of David and the Pitchfork. There are many White gang members, and more and more Los Angeles gang members are finding business prosperity on the East Coast. There is not a lot of rivalry with Bloods, and they are working together to make money.

Crip flag hanging below his jersey on left side

The United Crip Nation is an alliance between Crips and the Gangster Disciples on the East Coast.

Currently there is a power struggle among many of the Los Angeles based Crip gangs. The Roll'in 60's has issues between the old guard vs. the younger gang members, which spread to other states and cities who have Neighborhood Crip sets.

What happens in Los Angeles, happens elsewhere.

Gangs in South Central Los Angeles, CA
Five Deuce Hoover graffiti
Crip gang member, “Goofy” throwing up the “C” and disrespecting Pirus by throwing “P” down


Bloods are an association of structured and unstructured gangs that have adopted a single

gang culture. The original gang was called the "Pirus," or "Ru- Boys" and they began in

Compton, California in 1971 after the Vietnam War. The original founders Sylvester Scott, Benson Owens, and other members from the neighborhood served together in the United States Marine Corps and banded to fight the Crips who were trying to take over Compton.

They formed for protection against the Crips. Other local gangs like the Brims, Pueblos, and Swans joined the Pirus and they adopted the term Bloods in 1974-1975. Their colors are red. Some of the most influential Blood gangs that migrate from the West Coast are Athens Park, Black P Stone (Jungle Brims and Bity Brims), Bounty Hunters, Bloodstone Villains, Crenshaw

Mafia Gangsters, Denver Lane, Inglewood Family, Leuders Park Pirus, Roll'in 20's, and MOB


Do not confuse the Black P Stone Nation (Chicago) with the Jungle and Bity Brims, although their founder Tuemack Rodgers is from Chicago, Illinois and was a former Blackstone Ranger.

MOB Piru was founded by the rap mogul Marion "Shug" Knight.

Los Angeles Blood Sets:

Bounty Hunter Bloods:

The Eastside Bounty Hunter Bloods are a predominately African-American street gang located in the Nickerson Gardens public housing projects in Watts in the City of Los Angeles.

Prior to the formation of the Bounty Hunters, the main group in this area were known as the Green Jackets. The Bounty Hunters have several sets in and around Nickerson Gardens public housing:

Bounty Hunters has expanded to other cities across the world including Detroit, Michigan, Belize, New York (State), Baltimore, Maryland, Salt Lake City, Utah, Brazil, New Zealand, New Jersey (State), Virginia (State), Nashville, Tennessee, and Chattanooga, Tennessee

Bounty Hunter Hand Sign (B with right hand- H with left hand)
Bounty Hunter Bloods/ Ace Line graffiti

Roll'in 30's:

Also known as the East Side Roll'in 30's Bloodstone Pirus are the only Piru set outside of Compton, California. Their rivals are all Roll'in Crip sets, and all Gangster Crip sets.

Roll’in 30’s BSP graffiti

Black P Stone Jungle and Bity Brims:

The Black P Stone Jungle and Bity Brims are not connected with the Black P Stone Nation in Chicago, Illinois. However, their founder Tuemack Rodgers (T Rodgers) was a former Blackstone Ranger from Chicago, Illinois.

The Jungle Brims control an area West of Crenshaw Bl, between Martin Luther King Avenue and Vernon Avenue. The movie Training Day was shot in the jungle. The Bity Brims (Bloods do not use letter C) are off Adams Bl to Jefferson Bl, and Crenshaw Bl to Arlington Avenue.

Black P Stone Bity’s. They will put up the “C” and cross it out themselves
Black P Stone Jungles

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These are West Coast Blood Hand Signs. On the left is the Brim hand sign. In the middle throwing Brims and with left hand Crip Killer. On the right P for Piru.

There is also an East Coast faction that formed in 1993 in New York, NY called the United Blood Nation.

They are a predominately African-American gang that has a large contingent of White and Latino members today. Adhering to West Coast ideologies and claiming membership under West Coast sets, East Coast Bloods factions are changing 31 second "jump in" to 21 seconds, using West Coast gang influenced videos as instruction tools, and under a "Brim Love" East Coast sets maintain their names under a West Coast "OG. United Blood Nation members wear beads.

East Coast Bloods wear beads

Some of the East Coast factions are known as the Nine Trey Gangsters, Sex, Money, Murder, and Gangster Killer Bloods (G Shine). East Coast factions also use Swahili terminology. Any African-American who has travelled in Africa can tell you that those that currently live there have very little "love" for their black American brothers.

And long before the Dutch and other European nations began buying slaves, African warrior tribes practiced slavery for many centuries. A return to the African old religions is also encouraged and taught. This is done despite historically the African tribes were converted to Islam, not by missionaries, but by the sword. These Muslim nations also practiced slavery and provided a market for the slave trade.

The common terminology that is rhetoric by many Bloods gang members are "Damu" (Blood) and "Renda" (love). Other Swalhili language ASANTE/Thank You, BABU/Grandfather or Father, BASI/That's All, BIBI/Grandmother, HATA MOJA/None, JAMAA/Family, JINA/Name, IJANA/Youth, LA/No, MTOTO MCHANGA/Girl or Baby, MTOTO WA KIUME/Boy, MWANAMKE/Woman, MWANAMUME/Men, MWANA DAMU/Man, MZAZI/Mother, NJDYO/Yes, WEWE/You.

Blood Tattoos:

Tattoos are among the most common way that gang members identify themselves. This training will cover the tattoos that blood gang members use. Below you will find a list of tattoos/brands that bloods use for identification, show of rank and what set they claim.

MOB - These letters represent "Member of Blood" Most of the time the gang member will tell you that is stands for My Only Brother, Money Over Bitches or Mamas Only Boy. These are rehearsed answers and used to confuse you. Keep in mind that this tattoo alone may not be enough to say he/she is blood. There are individuals that tattoo these letters on their body because they honestly think it means something other than "Member of Blood".

Three Triangle Burn Marks/Tattooed - In the blood world, these are referred to ass Dog Paws and are one of the most common ways for a blood to identify. The most common place you will find these is between the index and thumb, but I have also seen them on the right shoulder and on the stomach. Although most dog paws are burned onto the skin, you will also find them tattooed. These are also called "triple O's.

Nine Trey Gangsters Triple O’s. Top mark is a bullet wound. Burn mark is an inverted triangle

Each East Coast faction have their own schematic design: 

Sex Money Murder Triple O’s are three burn marks slanted
Gangster Killer Bloods or “G Shine” form an equilateral triangle

Gangster Killer Bloods or "G Shine" form an equilateral triangle

The three dots or burn marks are referred to as "Triple O's. these Triple O's are in various sequences such as an inverted triangular shape means the gang member is a Nine Trey Gangster or "Nine Tec Grenade," an equilateral triangular shape indicates the gang member is a Gangster Killer Blood or "G Shine," the shape of an "L" means they are Valentine Bloods, three dots horizontally mean they are members of Sex, Money, Murder.

Five-Pointed Star - Bloods rep the number five and use a five-pointed star as another identifier. You will see the number 5 inside of the star sometimes and also the word Blood written from right to left around the points.

Five-Pointed Crown - Again using the number five they will incorporate that number into a crown. A lot of times there will be an upside-down pitchfork holding the crown up. This shows disrespect to Crips and Folk Nation gangs.

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Gang Hierarchy:

Nine Trey Gangsters:


2.Big 020

3.Low 020

4.5 Star General

5.4 Star General

6.3 Star General

7.2 Star General

8.1 Star General

G Shine or Gangster Killer Bloods ink

In addition to the threat posed by the Bloods street gang there is also information that indicates the street gang has made alliances with extremist groups including Black Separatists such as the Nation of Islam, the New Black Panther Party, and the Five Percent Nation of God's and Earths.

Sex Money Murder Hierarchy:


Street Boss

Head of Security

Business Manager


SMM have enforcers and bodyguards and crew bosses in each state. A crew boss is responsible for criminal activity in a state.

East Side Ryder Bloods graffiti in Prince George’s County, MD
Tree Top Piru gang member in Prince George’s County, MD

Various Bloods identifiers are the colors, Red and Black, Brown, and Pink. East Coast Bloods wear beads that are either red and white or red and black, or just red, CK for Crip Killa, Dog Paws or Three Dots, B's Up/ C's Down, red dye tips on members hair, and Sex Money Nurder will flag red and green. 

Sex Money Murder hand sign
Sex, Money, Murder (SMM) began in 1987. SMM was one of the sets (gangs) of the New York Gang Alliance. Because of an ongoing power struggle, where each gang wanted to be number one, and SMM flipped.

They left the NYG Alliance and became a sanctioned set of the Bloods. The various sets of the Bloods had decided it was in their interests to come together as the East Coast United Blood Nation (UBN) in 1993.

Sex Money Murder factions include:

The Viewside Line

The Hillside Line.



The Omega Line

Murder City Mafia

Paper Boys

Slug Line

Sex Money Murder is a heavy influence trafficking drugs up and down the East Coast extending into Florida. They are also known as "hustlers," and many members are pimps and traffic prostitutes from New York and New Jersey South into Maryland, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Florida.

SMM has extended its reach into the Hip Hop/Gangster Rap world. Various rappers are known members of SMM. These rappers include Hocus, S-ONE, Lord Tariq, Peter Gunz, Took and Hussein Fatal of The Outlawz.

Today, SMM members refer to themselves in verbal shorthand as "Murder Gang" or as "Blazing Billy," like Billy the Kid.

Bloods Terminology:

GKB - This represents "Gangsta Killa Blood", also referred to as G-Shyne

Other References:

B-rabs - refers to Crips insult - "Brabs" means Crabs, what Bloods call Crips but since they

cannot pronounce the C they use a B. Erickets - refers to Crips insult

Denver Lames - refer (derogatorily) to the Denver Lane Bloods GS- Gay soldier, said by a Blood to disrespect a Crip

Hard Backs- derogative terms for Crips Jungles - ghetto areas belonging to Bloods

OG - Original Gangster (The highest rank you can receive in the gang)

OTM - "Out That Mob"

Red DoggTags - Identifies EastCoast Bloods Rice Crispies refers to the Raymond Ave Crips Nappy Heads for the Neighborhood Crips Paisley - design used by Bloods on bandannas pu55y - variation of pussy

Swayhooks - Swans

Sissies - Pejorative term for Rollin Sixties Tramps - Eight Tray Gangster

Peter Rolled - is a Bloods term for murder "What dat B like homeboy!"

"What It B-Like"

"What's Poppin" - "What's up/happening" "What's Brakin"

Borner - Corner

Bousin - Cousin

Finna - Gonna

The three dots or burn marks are referred to as "Triple O's. these Triple O's are in various sequences such as an inverted triangular shape means the gang member is a Nine Trey Gangster or "Nine Tec Grenade," an equilateral triangular shape indicates the gang member is a Gangster Killer Blood or "G Shine," the shape of an "L" means they are Valentine Bloods, three dots horizontally mean they are members of Sex, Money, Murder.

This Bloods gang member has an equilateral shape burn marks indicating he is Gangster Killer Blood