[Police Commissioner Anthony W.] Batts last week said police are struggling to stop violence in West Baltimore, where officers have been routinely surrounded by dozens of people, video cameras and hostility while performing basic police work since the death of Freddie Gray, the 25-year-old who died after suffering a spinal cord injury while in police custody. The Western District, the site of Gray's arrest and the epicenter of the protests and rioting that followed his death, has seen the majority of the city's recent shootings and homicides, which are coming faster than they have in eight years.In a democracy, sadly, sometimes people get the government they deserve.
Six officers are charged criminally in Gray's death. Some police officers have said they feel hesitant on the job under intense public scrutiny.
On Friday, the director and another member of [Mayor Stephanie C.] Rawlings-Blake's criminal justice office left their jobs, marking the biggest shake-up in her administration since the recent rioting and unrest in the city. Their departures came a few weeks after the director of the city's anti-violence initiative, Operation Ceasefire, left his job voluntarily.
Throughout the 1990s, Baltimore saw more than 300 homicides every year. The death toll dropped to 253 in 2002 under then-Mayor Martin O'Malley — who instituted a tough-on-crime policing approach called "zero tolerance" — before rising to 282 in 2007, prompting then-Mayor Sheila Dixon to replace Police Commissioner Leonard Hamm with Frederick H. Bealefeld III midyear.
Monday, May 25, 2015
Baltimore carnage: Deadliest month since 1999
Baltimore's left-wing mayor and its agenda-driven prosecutor have declared war on the police. As the Baltimore Sun points out--it's costing people their lives. With five days still left in May, 35 people have been murdered in Maryland's largest city--already making it the deadliest month in Baltimore since 1999.