Law enforcement and community members gathered Monday to learn what they can do to help combat a growing gang problem in the east.
The 6th annual Eastern Carolina Gang Conference was held at Lenoir Community College.
Organizers say trends are showing gangs being pushed out of inner urban areas and moving toward smaller communities.
Detective Benjamin Parrish with the Duplin County Sheriff's Office says gang criminal activity is broad - from narcotics to guns to prostitution, and now they're also committing white collar crimes.
Officials estimate by the end of this year there will be close to 41,000 gang members in our state.