Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction

                                               NEWS RELEASE                                                  


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                           September 4, 2003  

State Agencies Will Partner to Address Gang Activity in Ohio at the National Major Gang Task Force Conference in Cincinnati

(Columbus) – The 4th Annual Ohio Conference on Gangs and the 9th Annual National Major Gang Task Force Conference will unite with one mission from September 7th – 10th in Cincinnati at The Millennium/ Four Points Sheraton Hotel.  Law enforcement officials, prosecutors and state corrections personnel will come together to network and share in the latest techniques that deal with gang prevention and identification.  This conference is being co-sponsored by Attorney General Jim Petro’s Office, the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction (DRC), the Ohio Department of Youth Services (DYS) and the Office of Criminal Justice Services. 

No community is immune from gang activity.  Besides being within Ohio’s prisons and jails, gangs can be found in nearly every community in Ohio.  These agencies will be joining forces in combating gang activity and its impact on the quality of life for Ohioans.

“It is very important to have partnerships and utilize a team approach when dealing with security threat groups.  Terrorism and threats from gangs can only be contained and controlled when law enforcement partners with various agencies to cripple their threats,” stated DRC Director Reginald A. Wilkinson.

“The best way to stop gang activity is prevention and we can only do that by educating kids in school early,” said Attorney General Jim Petro.  “By bringing all these working groups together for a time of sharing and learning, we hope to provide them with the tools they need to stay on top of the threat they incur.”

“As the juvenile corrections system in Ohio, we are confronted with gang activity at it’s initial stages,” said Geno Natalucci-Persichetti, Director of DYS.  “These partnerships will enable Ohio to continue it’s cutting edge approach in dealing with gang activity in the state,” he added.

Topics to be discussed at the conference will include: 

For more information about the National Major Gang Task Force Conference, please contact Andrea Dean at the DRC Public Information Office at (614) 752-1150, or contact Michelle Gatchell at Attorney General Jim Petro’s Office at (614) 466-3840, Ann Liotta, Department of Youth Services, at (614) 728-9319, or Erin O’Donnell at the Office of Criminal Justice Services at (614) 466-1830.

Directions to the Site (From Columbus):

Take I-71 South to the Reading Road/ Gilbert Avenue exit.  Take Reading Road South which turns into Central Parkway.  Follow Central Parkway to Walnut Street and turn left.  Follow Walnut Street to 4th Street and turn right.  Follow 4th Street to Elm Street and turn right.  Follow Elm Street to 5th Street and turn right.  The hotel is located on the left corner of 5th Street and Elm Street.