Ex-Gang Member Says Hip-Hop Is To Blame For Rocketing Violent Crime

10 April 2018, 08:13 | Updated: 10 April 2018, 09:55

Shaun used to be a member of one of south London's most notorious gangs. He told LBC of how easily violence can spiral out of control - and how hip-hop is to blame.

Gangs have come into focus recently as London's violent crime figures soared to beat those of New York.

Among the remarkable things he revealed in his eye-opening call are:

- Gangs have a "scorecard" based on how many members of other gangs they have stabbed or shot.

- Hip-hop music should take a huge part of the blame for glamourising violence.

- Most of the gang members come from single-parent families.

- His uncle has fathered 36 children.

Ian Collins spoke to Shaun, a former gang member
Ian Collins spoke to Shaun, a former gang member. Picture: LBC / Getty

Speaking to Ian Collins, Shaun said: "I used to be a member of one of London's notorious gangs and I can tell you what it's like from the inside.

"These problems start from a lot of small things. A close friend of mine got killed and it all started from somebody staring. It starts from a small thing. I got stabbed up literally on the back of speaking on the phone.

"A major thing which I've not heard anyone else mention is hip-hop music. I can't stress enough how hip-hop music is influencing people to do things.

"Something happens and these kids will come back to the block, get gassed up, get in the car and someone will put on a track. You'll hear "shoot em, shoot em, shoot em", so when you get into a situation, your mind reverts back to what you've been hearing all this time.

"When I was growing up, we looked at So Solid like they were our long-lost Dads. We couldn't believe that people like us were on TV getting Brit Awards. You aspire to be like them and in their songs, all they talk about is hurting people."