This is the incredible dissertation story of Columbia Professor and Sociologist Sudhir Venkatesh. They say doing a PhD is a killer, but this is on another level. Read/listen to the story on NPR
Whats incredible about this is the gang leader who he befriended, JT, was a college graduate with a corporate job and left all of that to make 100K selling as the head hancho for a crack operation. There is the misconception that the guys running gangs are not that bright. They are actually some of the most astute and disciplined people. What a waste.
Not our usual Afropolitan story. But when I heard about this I assumed the guy was white. Interesting that he is originally from India.