is a numeric code
for the crime
. It is primarily used by law enforcement
officials in the U.S. state
—especially police, prosecutors, and judges—because Section 187 of the California Penal Code
defines the crime of murder. The number is pronounced by reading the digits separately as "one-eight-seven," rather than "one hundred eighty-seven."
The number 187 is now in common use by many gangs throughout the United States as a synonym for murder; this usage has been reported among gangs as far away as Florida and Wisconsin.
Section 187, subdivision (a), defines murder as the "unlawful killing of a human being ... with malice aforethought." In California, suspects are usually charged by reference to one or more Penal Code (PC) sections. Thus, the charging documents for a suspect charged for murder would be inscribed with "PC 187(a)" or just "PC 187." If a suspect is charged with attempted murder, then the relevant code would be "PC 664/187" because attempt is defined in Penal Code section 664.
Since murder is such a serious crime, the use of "187" as a synonym for murder is well-known among California attorneys and judges. For example, in June 2007, the California Court of Appeal (Fourth District, Division Three) reversed a defense verdict because the judge kept making jokes such as telling the plaintiffs' lawyer she could object "until I die" and then the next day following up with "objection, 187," in response to new objections from her. The Court of Appeal was not amused with the trial judge's sarcastic method of telling the plaintiffs' lawyer that her objections were so bad that they were killing him (in the figurative sense).
- The Sublime song "April 29, 1992". In the song Bradley Nowell sings "They said it was for the black man, they said it was for the Mexican -- but not for the white man, but if you look at the streets, it wasn't about Rodney King, it's about this fucked up situation and these fucked up police, its about coming up, and staying on top and screaming one eight seven on a mother-fucking cop".
- "Deep Cover", also known as "187", performed by Dr. Dre and Snoop Dogg on the soundtrack Deep Cover. A remix of the song is found on the Dre Day single. "Yeah, and ya don't stop...'cause it's 187 on an undercover cop..."
- Often used in skits on many Death Row Records albums for a fictional radio station, 187.4 FM.
- Trigga Got No Heart, performed by Oakland-based rapper Spice One and included in the soundtrack to the 1993 film Menace II Society.
- Spice 1 would make the song "187 Proof" in his first studio album "Spice 1."
- Master P's 1996 album Ice Cream Man included a song entitled "Time for a 187."
- 187, officially One Eight Seven, is a song by the New Jersey based band Senses Fail.
- 187 On the Dance Floor is a rap song from a collaboration named L.A. Symphony.
- It's on (
Dr. Dre) 187um Killa (1993) is the name of one of rapper Eazy-E's albums.
- The Insane Clown Posse's first EP is titled Beverly Kills 50187.
- Angerfist - 187 (ft. Predator), song 9 on CD2 of the Mutilate album.
- Tech N9ne - Absolute Power "I'm hollin 187 if you tripping with strange" Off, of the album "Absolute Power"
- Jay Sean - Murder "That Girl is Murder, she's a one eighty seven".
- One Eight Seven - Dr.Dre - The Chronicles
- In "My Buddy" by G-Unit it is mentioned that "When you meet him, your destination's hell or heaven, cause I only bring him out for that 187"
- Watch Your Back - Benny Cassette - The Fast And The Furious OST: "357's or AK-47's, All tools that create 187's"
- In the song Who Am I (What's My Name), Snoop Dogg says, "...Shit that I drop cuz ya know it don't stop/Mr. One Eight Seven on a motherfuckin cop."
- C-Bo - Deadly Game. The term 187 is repeated thoroughly throughout the chorus. "It's one-eight-seven on the D.A./Cause they ain't tryin to give a young motherfucka no leeway/Yes yes, y'all/One-eight-seven on the whole courtroom, motherfuck em all." C-Bo was later arrested over this song's lyrics -- one of the only known cases in which a rapper was arrested over lyrical content.
- 50 cent's Curtis album - track 16 - Curtis 187, song basically talks about 50's prowess at killing people. refrain "i'm grimy, i'm greasy, i make a 187 look easy"
- In the first verse from Ca$his' song "Ms. Jenkins" it talks about two people in opposing gangs looking to kill each other. It says "He screemed 187, I said I never hide, you know were I'm at boy, I ain't hard to find"
Film and television
- One Eight Seven is the title of a 1997 movie produced by Kevin Reynolds. It features Samuel L. Jackson.
- In Boyz N the Hood, a police radio states there is a 187 requiring immediate attention.
- In Menace II Society, O-Dog tells Caine about the whereabouts of those who killed his cousin, and then asks him if he's "Down with a 187?".
- On Episode 7 of Season 4 of the popular HBO mob crime drama The Sopranos, a gang member instructs his crew to shoot the ceilings of some houses but "no 187s."
- According to the Internet Movie Database, the number 187 has been used in the titles of four movies, of which two were small art productions, one was a documentary, and one (the movie One Eight Seven, released in 1997) starred Samuel L. Jackson. Murder was a major theme in the three fictional works; the documentary was about Proposition 187.
- The 1993 action movie Demolition Man featured a scene where the police officers of the future city of San Angeles did not know what a 187 was until the police station's computer explained it to them.
- In the song "Let's Be Careful Out There" from the short-lived television show Cop Rock, Mike Flannigan states that "they have a 187 at a 7-11." However, he says it as one-eighty-seven so it would fit pentameter.
- Many of the subjects in the 2004 documentary Juvies tended to say "I'm in for 187," rather than "I'm in for murder."
- In the 1976 Rudy Ray Moore movie The Human Tornado Captain Ryan tells Detective Pete Blakely that he wants him to investigate a 187. Dolemite is wrongfully accused of killing the white wife of a rural sheriff when in fact the sheriff had killed his wife himself after catching her having sex with Dolemite.
- On Episode 15 of Season 4 of Fox's The O.C., Summer, after an earthquake and upon hearing a prowler, instructs Taylor to "go 187" on the person.
- In the film The Fast And The Furious, Leon states that "there's a 187 in Glendale, cops are all over it, we're good to go, let's race."
- In the 2004 film Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story, the announcer states that the LAPD "were given a 187" after their team is defeated in one of the dodgeball matches.
- The term 187 is referenced repeatedly by John C. Reilly's character in Paul Thomas Anderson's film, Magnolia.
- In Strong Bad email 187 Coach Z Says "1-8-7...? Oooohhh! Get down!" in an easter egg.
- There is an Xbox and PlayStation 2 video game called 187 Ride or Die.