How the BPP accidentally produced what became the Crips
"Out of the ashes of the Black Panther Party, Crips was born – Community Revolutionary Party Services, or the earliest term was Continuous Revolution In Progress. They wanted to continue the revolution. That was the beginnings of black gangs of that era. If you go back before the Crips and Bloods, all the way to the 1940s, the first gangs in South Central were white gangs called Spook Hunters. As a result of that, other gangs were born, black gangs – the Farmers, the Gladiators, the Slausons, the Businessmen.
"At that time, blacks were coming from the South, the whole black migration to Los Angeles. When they got here they were faced with a bunch of racism, and most of the high schools were controlled by white gangs. You had black parents putting their kids into schools and integrating them, and that was when they met resistance from the Spook Hunters, and that led to black gangs being formed to fight off attacks by the white gangs. It was totally self-defense.
"Then the whole political agenda came in in ’65, with the Civil Rights movement, the Black Liberation movement. Most of the gangs who were born out of the resistance to the Spook Hunters got politicized. A lot of Slausons went into the Black Panther Party, a lot of your Gladiators went into the Us Organization, [who were] cultural nationalists. You’ve got to understand, we had white flight at this time, too, so that’s how some of these gangs turned on each other – not killing each other, but they had a rivalry, with the whites leaving and blacks remaining as the dominant force in the area.
"From where I stand, the LAPD have always had a hand in this whole situation. I’m not crying victim or saying that’s why we’re banging, but they definitely have a hand in it. You can trace that back to the history of the LAPD; they were recruiting from the South straight to Los Angeles, because they had such an influx of blacks coming in from down South. They did a projection of how many blacks were going to be here by ’65 or ’67, and they felt they really needed to have a stronghold on the black population here. That’s probably the origin of a lot of the racism that’s part of the LAPD’s tradition.
"The FBI also definitely had a hand in it. [Former FBI agent] Wes Swearingen explained to me that his job was to come in and neutralize and discredit black leaders. 'Neutralize' means put in jail or even kill, and that wasn’t good enough. He said, 'We had to discredit them, also.' That’s what the whole Bunchy Carter thing was about. He explained to me they were going to kill Bunchy [of the Black Panther Party] down in the Watts area and make it look like a drug deal gone bad, but some of the infiltrators jumped the gun. Bunchy was later killed up on the campus of UCLA, him and [fellow Panther] John Huggins, but the original hit was going to go down in Watts and they were going to leave drugs around.