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NOPD try to keep up with gangs in city

As they evolve, officers try and keep up.

NEW ORLEANS - The mass shooting that occurred on S. Claiborne Avenue is believed to be gang related. Authorities suspect one of the men killed in the shooting was affiliated with one of the city's most notorious gangs. Eyewitness News spoke with NOPD Chief Michael Harrison about more of the city's gang situation.

At Monday's press conference, New Orleans Police Chief Michael Harrison shared the latest on the deadly shooting that took three lives Saturday night.

"There is information to support this was gang-related and information to support that this gang is part of it," he said.

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He's referring to the 3NG Drug Gang from Central City. One of the three people killed in Saturday's shooting was 30-year-old Jeremiah Lee, a man police believe to be part of the 3NG and the intended target of the shooting. 3NG is connected to other shootings in the area, including one in September of 2016. One man died and five others were hurt in that incident that reported targeted two members of that gang. It's not the only gang though law enforcement is looking into.

MORE: NOPD believes deadly S. Claiborne shooting is gang related

"There are a number of them and as we take them off they're always others that come up," Harrison said.

Harrison says there are more than 10 currently in different parts of the city. Each group he says is constantly changing and most here are informally run.

"Not very good hierarchy, structure and leadership," he added. "But very loosely organized but really that's the most dangerous kind of gang."

As they evolve, officers try and keep up. The Multi-Agency Gang Unit works daily to understand the groups' dynamics and rolls each gang member plays.

"How the citizens are made to take out actions against other members of other gangs and how those arguments and beefs occur within various groups and how they move around the city. We're always working to learn that," he said.

Their focus now is on Saturday's tragic incident. Working to find who's responsible, why it happened and to bring justice to those involved.

"All our Federal Partners meet at NOPD headquarters every Tuesday to talk about every murder, every shooting, robbery, how they're connected and how they're not connected," he said. "And how we're all doing something about it and who does what when."

Jade Cunningham can be reached at jcunningham@wwltv.com.

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