Shelby County gang unit delivers powerful information to parents

Sergeant Mike Bass delivers gang information straight to the top...he delivers information to parents.

Bass says, "Many parents are in shock..."

In shock, when they see evidence like these surveillance pictures.

Pictures that show their kids involved in gang activity.

The Shelby County Gang Unit sergeant continues, "The kids will sit there and swear up and down that No I'm not a gang member, then we pull out the photographs and of course it's kinda hard for a kid to deny a photograph when his face is in there throwing a gang sign and attending a gang meeting."

He doesn't dance around the truth with the kids or the parents.

Bass continues, "Look this is what you've got to look forward to, do you want to go visit your kid on Sunday in the penitentiary? Do you want to go visit your kid on Sunday in the graveyard. Because he's headed in that direction."

Bass told Action News Five this direct approach is draws mixed reaction.

"Some of those parents are receptive, others are in denial. a lot of these parents simply don't know," continues Bass.

For the families who want to get their kids out of gangs..

The Sheriff's Office is ready to help.

Bass says, "We give em steps and how to get out of the gang activity. One thing they have to do is stop identifying with the gang."

This veteran officer says if this effort keeps one kid from winding up a spray painted memory, then it's working.