”Criminal Street Gang” Definition California

Penal Code Section 186.22, subdivision (b)(1) provides for a sentence enhancement for "any person who is convicted of a felony committed for the benefit of, at the direction of, or in association with any criminal street gang, with the specific intent to promote, further, or assist in any criminal conduct by gang members."

A "criminal street gang" "means any ongoing organization, association, or group of three or more persons, whether formal or informal, having as one of its primary activities the commission of one or more of" enumerated criminal acts, "having a common name or common identifying sign or symbol, and whose members individually or collectively engage in or have engaged in a pattern of criminal gang activity." (§ 186.22, subd. (f).) A "pattern of gang activity" may be shown by the commission of two or more of certain offenses, committed within certain time frames "on separate occasions, or by two or more persons." (§ 186.22, subd. (e).) This law is set forth in the pattern jury instruction CALCRIM No. 1401.

A gang special circumstance requires that the defendant "intentionally killed the victim while the defendant was an active participant in a criminal street gang, as defined in subdivision (f) of Section 186.22, and the murder was carried out to further the activities of the criminal street gang." (§ 190.2, subd. (a)(22).)

The standard of review of the sufficiency of the evidence of gang special circumstances and gang enhancements is the same as for any other conviction. (People v. Streeter (2012) 54 Cal.4th 205, 241; People v. Ochoa (2009) 179 Cal.App.4th 650, 657.) The evidence must be "reasonable, credible, and of solid value." (Bolin, supra, 18 Cal.4th at p. 331.)