Los Angeles Times

A policing tool, or profiling? California is reworking controversial gang database

SACRAMENTO, Calif. - Brian Allen was driving home from work in July 2017 when he spotted someone from his days at Crenshaw High School. He stopped, they talked and he agreed to give the friend - an aspiring rapper with a criminal record - a ride.

A passing LAPD cruiser did a U-turn and pulled over Allen's Nissan. Officers questioned both men and let them go.

But more than a year later, police notified Allen that he'd been added to CalGang, a controversial database of thousands of gang members and those in their orbits. Police alleged that he associates with gangs because, Allen suspects, he has been seen in gang areas - the South L.A. neighborhood where he lives - and with an alleged gang member - the old friend.

"I was stunned," the 31-year-old dance instructor said. "You automatically get cast as (a gang member) often just because of how

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