The Real-life Consequences of Flawed Gang Databases

South LA has made great strides when it comes to gang violence over the last several decades, and one tool in the belt of law enforcement has been a database called CalGang. It’s supposed to be a place where law enforcement can cross-check the names of suspects or people in police custody with a list of known gang members. However, according to a state audit out this week, the database is deeply flawed. There are unverified entries, out-of-date information and some of the information is just plain wrong. As it turns out, that can have far-reaching consequences, because immigration officials use the data to deport undocumented people, including those who may have never had gang ties in the US.