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Juggalos – A gang … or a ‘family’? – Police see juggalos as gang in Medford

Medford police will tell you it’s a gang responsible for beatings, harassment and intimidation.

Police say there’s nothing uplifting about the violence associated with the group. Lt. Brett Johnson of the Medford Police Department said that Juggalos are frequently responsible for beatings, intimidation, and harassment, particularly in and around Hawthorne Park. Johnson said that the May 2011 stabbing of 21-year-old Michael Gregory was Juggalo-related.

In some common usage, references to Juggalo can be negative, nearly synonymous with “white trash.” Urban Dictionary, a Web-based dictionary of slang words and phrases, has no fewer than 248 entries — mostly derogatory — about Juggalos, or Juggalettes, as females in the group are sometimes called.

“Family friendly” activities notwithstanding, Lt. Johnson said that Medford wasn’t the only community that has experienced Juggalo “gang” problems.

Farther north, the Corvallis Police Department arrested two teenagers in 2010 for multiple beatings and assaults. Police said the two identified themselves as Juggalos.

“We’re not just going after homeless youth, it’s everybody’s park,” Johnson said, “But, if they identify as a Juggalo and engage in criminal behavior we will try and document that.”

“They identify as a family and identify themselves as Juggalos,” Johnson said, “They are definitely considered a gang.”