In The Aftermath Of Unrest: Some See Baltimore’ Spike In Violence As A Result Of Retaliation From Cops For Gains The Black Community Have Made In The Freddie Gray Case

The indictment of six Baltimore police officers who interacted  with Freddie Gray after he was arrested and died in the custody of police in the western district portion of the city, has been largely lauded by community leaders within the black community, as a step in the right direction, and a sign that the city is now moving closer to healing from public outrage over the death of yet another black man who many believe was a victim of systemic brutality by Baltimore police. The fallout from the mysterious death of Freddie Gray while in police custody mushroomed into full scale rioting throughout the city as protest rapidly spread throughout many of Baltimore’ poorest communities.

When the announcement came from Baltimore’s top prosecutor Marilyn Mosby, that the officers who interacted with Mr. Gray while he was in police custody would be charge with a volume of crimes, many within the police and law enforcement community in the Baltimore area and around the country became outraged, claiming that the newly elected young prosecutor was attempting to calm a city simmering with unrest, and declared Mosby as being unfit to try the case due to purported conflicts of interest related to her relation to the Gray family’s attorney William Murphy, who reportedly donated money to her campaign, also coupled with her marriage to Nick Mosby who is a city councilman that represents the community in which Mr. Gray’s encounter with police occurred in.

However, the conflict of interest claim by the Baltimore Fraternal Order of Police (FOP) as it relates to donations made to Marilyn Mosby’s campaign while running for Baltimore’s top prosecutor post seems completely absurd, especially considering that the FOP contributed just a few hundred dollars less to Mosby’s campaign. The harsh criticism of Mosby only seemed to rear it’s head when the young prosecutor took a bold, and unprecedented stance to secure 28 indictments against Baltimore police, who her office will be dependent upon to provide information to  aid in prosecuting criminal cases in Baltimore city.

Many law enforcement experts are miffed at the notion that Mosby’s effort to proceed with indictments of police in her own city will transpire without upheaval. At the center of debate is the issue related to whether or not the knife Freddie Gray had in his possession was legal. Those who argue that the knife was legal, align themselves with Mosby who has charged three officers, including a supervisor, with misconduct while in office for exacting an unlawful arrest of Freddie Gray. Those who oppose this claim, mostly police supporters, say that the knife was illegal, that there was justification for Mr. Gray’s arrest, and a lawyer for one of the accused officers has filed a motion requesting Mosby’s office produce the knife in question to demonstrate it’s illegality.

Both sides of this pertinent issue have argued stringently to bolster their perspectives, and while police seem to want the knife to be the main focus of the Freddie Gray case, city officials from Mayor Stephanie Rawlings Blake, Police Commissioner Batts, and all the way on down to the arresting officers of Freddie Gray have all collectively failed to offer a credible explanation as to how Freddie Gray died in police custody. The images depicted from a cellphone video recording which was portrayed on just about every media source around the nation,  showing an apparent injured Freddie Gray being literally dragged to a police transport vehicle by Baltimore police, offers the best evidence for the prosecutor’s office justification for seeking indictments, and limits any attempt to deflect responsible of Freddie Gray’s demise by Baltimore police top brass or the arresting officers themselves.

The unrest that followed Gray’s death as a result of city police officials inability or refusal to make public how Gray died, has been harshly criticized by national media, making certain that the images depicting Baltimore burning, rioting, and conflicts with police by city residents were made headline news across the globe. Many community leaders who have more insight from on the ground in Baltimore have argued that the initial disturbance that began in the Mondawmin community was initiated by the police. The Mondawmin Mall plays host to a major mass transportation hub that dispatches buses and a subway system to destinations in all directions encompassing West Baltimore, and there are a volume of schools in the area that feed kids to the transportation system who are bound for their perspective home communities upon school dismissal.

Witnesses of the initial confrontation between high school kids and city police reportedly began when police refused to allow students access to the transportation center. This would create a serious dilemma for hundreds of kids from nearby poverty stricken communities, that forced them to have to walk home, and depending upon which direction they’re traveling it meant walking through some of the toughest terrain in the city. Police officials claim that a tip was provided regarding a planned disturbance by school kids who chose Mondawmin as ground zero for a protest related to the Freddie Gray case. It’s not clear which city police official was responsible for directing hundreds of riot gear posturing police to the Mondawmin Mall, but that decision proved to be a terrible blunder and the catalyst that started mass disturbance throughout the city.

Confronting school kids with tactical gear without an initial provocation by them, has been described as excessive and cowardice on the part of city police by many following the Freddie Gray case. While those who seem to think they know how best to handle situations like the Baltimore unrest and are calling for a heavy handed approach to police “thugs” on the streets, they seem to be blinded by the systemic root causes of why school kids would want to fight police or authority figures in the first place. This generation of youth in Baltimore are the most vulnerable in recent memory. Faced with one of the most despicable educational systems in America, these children come from homes with the most uneducated parents in the nation, and coupled with city budgetary decisions these kids have had essentially every after school program limited by the lack of funding from the state or priority spending by public officials who have seemingly forgotten the kids of Baltimore.

Additionally, many of the kids in the city are accustomed to the kind of police brutality that resulted in the death of Freddie Gray. A police force that has been out of control for decades, got it’s marching orders during the Martin O’Malley administration, who as mayor bolstered a corrupt police force with directives that afforded police carte blanche authority during a “zero tolerance” approach toward policing the streets of Baltimore. In those years city police arrested over 100,000 citizens (primarily poor, black, and minority citizens) in a town populated with a little over 700, 000 people. The culture of policing in Baltimore has always been to the extent where police seemingly arrested people on GP (general principle), with laws like “loitering” (standing on a corner), “roving vagabound” (traveling within the confines of city limits without identification on one’s person), and “failure to obey” (essentially a tool for arrest without good cause) literally handcuffs citizens who easily fill police quotes for arrest in Baltimore.

For all of the ranting and raving about how tough the streets are in Baltimore city and challenges police face on the job, the police are still grossly ineffective in making charges stick in most criminal cases that go through the city’ judicial system. Some believe that Freddie Gray was in fact a casualty of Baltimore police inability to secure convictions of criminals in the city for even miner offenses. Police analyst call it “contempt of cop” when police engage a suspect who they have arrested and charged with the same crime over and over again, only to see them back on the streets engaging in the same illegal activity. Angered by what police who arrest Gray may have seen as a system that allows criminals to go free, crime experts say Freddie Gray who had a volume of previous arrest may have been handled harshly by police who knew him well.

Despite Gray seemingly being a nuisance to police in his community, he didn’t deserve to be denied proper medical care while in police custody. I am sure that the prosecutor’s office and lawyers for the  6 indicted officers will “duke” it out in court regarding how Freddie Gray died, but the decision to charge the police officers who interacted with Freddie Gray prior to his death while in custody, has already began to cause a major backlash from city police. The volume of violent crimes in Baltimore have spiked to an alarming 89%, and recently reached the most violent month in the city since 1999. Observers say that police morale in Baltimore is on a decline, with officers allegedly timid to do their jobs out of fear that their actions me cause serious repercussions.

To many who know the Baltimore policing community well, the low morale claim is simply a pile of “flying horse manure,” and liken such an absurd posture by disgruntled cops to a child crying over a glass of spilled milk. It’s common knowledge among those who have been taken for a ride, off to the steel bars that make up the old Baltimore city jail,  and which also historically in it’s own right has a storied past of brutality that dates back to the early 19th century. For years claims of excessive use of force and brutality were made against Baltimore police, and regularly fell upon death ears because police have always been deemed more credible over criminal suspects in the eyes of the law. When the the brutality began to reach epidemic heights, Baltimore adopted a policy of paying out monetary compensation to victims in the most heinous cases. The money secretly paid by the city is well below the amount of damages other municipalities have paid in similar cases of abuse by their respective police agencies.

Baltimore’s policy of secretly settling lawsuits related to abuse claims against it’s police department literally enabled the systemic police brutality of city residents, and now technology has caught up to abusive police culture, with just about everyone in society having a mobile device on their person capable of capturing video at a moments notice. The video of Freddie Gray being dragged by police to a prisoner transport vehicle while appearing injured, raises tremendous suspicion as to what actually happened to cause him resulting in his unresponsiveness, and subsequently die as a result of a severe spinal cord injury. The recording filmed by a witness is to many Americans, an anecdote exposing the rigors of how black suspects are treated by police, often killed, falsely accused of crimes, and resembles a “wow” moment similar to the scene of O.J. Simpson’s “dream team” defense lawyers playing a audio recording of Los Angeles police detective Mark Furman utilizing the “N word” repeatedly after having previously testified to not using such language in over twenty years.

A systemic culture of brutality, misconduct, and untruthfulness in the eyes of many Baltimoreans is the most appropriate description for police culture in the city of Baltimore. Police response to the indictment of six of their own may have resulted in serious backlash from the rank and file in retaliation toward the public for the Freddie Gray case. Some long time community leaders, scholars, and political activist have become suspicious of the volume of shootings that have occurred since the rioting ended. Over the Memorial Day holiday weekend 26 people were shot in Baltimore, 9 were fatal. In most of those cases there appear to be a pattern. The shootings were scattered throughout the city, but most appear random with no obvious motive for the violence, and in a few of the cases, witnesses observed gunmen wearing all black daunting a mask. There has been no signs of evidence to suggest that the shootings were related, but some observers are cautioning the public from drawing conclusions or dismissing the spike in shootings as typical violent culture in the city.

An East Baltimore resident told TPC that the shootings involving small children creates suspicion that the shootings are in fact random acts of violence stemming from gang or drug turf wars. “The age of the child victims in the recent spat of gun violence doesn’t fit the script. Hell, they’re not even old enough to be involved in serious trouble like shooting people.” The reports surrounding the Baltimore children shooting victims don’t indicate whether the kids were caught in the cross fire of some sort of shoot out, and some say that the kids were targeted by an unknown gunmen, who committed a deliberate act. Why would anyone want to randomly shoot kids. Moreover, some of the adult shootings over the holiday weekend in Baltimore appear suspicious also. A couple of people simply walked into local hospitals with gunshot wounds, and in at least two of those shooting incidents, witnesses observed two gunmen wearing all black. The very fact that some of the shooting victims were unaware of how, or who even shot them, coupled with the cops offering no motives for most of the shootings has led many observers and others from the public to really consider who is actually out there shooting people on the streets of Baltimore.

While most will reject some sort of conspiracy regarding high volumes of shootings in Baltimore, other major cities have caused serious debate and suspicion regarding who is actually doing the shooting as well. In Chicago a shooting involving a white suspect that was caught on a dash cam, and other reports from witnesses of shootings in both Baltimore and Chicago have fueled the debate even more. Take a look at the video below:

 

Some believe the perpetrator in the above video looked, and acted like a cop. Others believe that white supremist are actively conducting hate crimes in urban communities around the country in minority populated areas of major cities, in an effort to spark mass violence or race riots. One of the comments in the discussion portion of the Youtube Video even suggest that the police are on the streets committing violent crimes, and placing blame on the black community. The discussion is continuing to grow and the more violence that develops will cast even more suspicion on shootings in the black community. The assertion that such violence is on going deliberately to target black people may be completely dismissed by many absolute absurdity, but given the history Baltimore police, some residents in the city believe that such a scenario is quite capable of having derived from within the corrupt ranks of the Baltimore City Police Department.  Are the cops shooting people in the black community in retaliation for the growing public criticism of police culture related to the killing of black men around the nation?

 

 

The People’s Champion

I’m Crime Blogger David Adams

David Adams

Self proclaimed geek, Advocate for the homeless, Social Change, Crime Blogger, and mobile technology enthusiast. Recognized journalist and Human Interest Writer championing the plight of the masses whom are without a voice of their own.

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The indictment of six Baltimore police officers who interacted  with Freddie Gray after he was arrested and died in the custody of police in the western district portion of the city, has been largely lauded by community leaders within the black community, as a step in the right direction, and a sign that the city is now moving closer to healing from public outrage over the death of yet another black man who many believe was a victim of systemic brutality by Baltimore police. The fallout from the mysterious death of Freddie Gray while in police custody mushroomed into full scale rioting throughout the city as protest rapidly spread throughout many of Baltimore’ poorest communities.

When the announcement came from Baltimore’s top prosecutor Marilyn Mosby, that the officers who interacted with Mr. Gray while he was in police custody would be charge with a volume of crimes, many within the police and law enforcement community in the Baltimore area and around the country became outraged, claiming that the newly elected young prosecutor was attempting to calm a city simmering with unrest, and declared Mosby as being unfit to try the case due to purported conflicts of interest related to her relation to the Gray family’s attorney William Murphy, who reportedly donated money to her campaign, also coupled with her marriage to Nick Mosby who is a city councilman that represents the community in which Mr. Gray’s encounter with police occurred in.

However, the conflict of interest claim by the Baltimore Fraternal Order of Police (FOP) as it relates to donations made to Marilyn Mosby’s campaign while running for Baltimore’s top prosecutor post seems completely absurd, especially considering that the FOP contributed just a few hundred dollars less to Mosby’s campaign. The harsh criticism of Mosby only seemed to rear it’s head when the young prosecutor took a bold, and unprecedented stance to secure 28 indictments against Baltimore police, who her office will be dependent upon to provide information to  aid in prosecuting criminal cases in Baltimore city.

Many law enforcement experts are miffed at the notion that Mosby’s effort to proceed with indictments of police in her own city will transpire without upheaval. At the center of debate is the issue related to whether or not the knife Freddie Gray had in his possession was legal. Those who argue that the knife was legal, align themselves with Mosby who has charged three officers, including a supervisor, with misconduct while in office for exacting an unlawful arrest of Freddie Gray. Those who oppose this claim, mostly police supporters, say that the knife was illegal, that there was justification for Mr. Gray’s arrest, and a lawyer for one of the accused officers has filed a motion requesting Mosby’s office produce the knife in question to demonstrate it’s illegality.

Both sides of this pertinent issue have argued stringently to bolster their perspectives, and while police seem to want the knife to be the main focus of the Freddie Gray case, city officials from Mayor Stephanie Rawlings Blake, Police Commissioner Batts, and all the way on down to the arresting officers of Freddie Gray have all collectively failed to offer a credible explanation as to how Freddie Gray died in police custody. The images depicted from a cellphone video recording which was portrayed on just about every media source around the nation,  showing an apparent injured Freddie Gray being literally dragged to a police transport vehicle by Baltimore police, offers the best evidence for the prosecutor’s office justification for seeking indictments, and limits any attempt to deflect responsible of Freddie Gray’s demise by Baltimore police top brass or the arresting officers themselves.

The unrest that followed Gray’s death as a result of city police officials inability or refusal to make public how Gray died, has been harshly criticized by national media, making certain that the images depicting Baltimore burning, rioting, and conflicts with police by city residents were made headline news across the globe. Many community leaders who have more insight from on the ground in Baltimore have argued that the initial disturbance that began in the Mondawmin community was initiated by the police. The Mondawmin Mall plays host to a major mass transportation hub that dispatches buses and a subway system to destinations in all directions encompassing West Baltimore, and there are a volume of schools in the area that feed kids to the transportation system who are bound for their perspective home communities upon school dismissal.

Witnesses of the initial confrontation between high school kids and city police reportedly began when police refused to allow students access to the transportation center. This would create a serious dilemma for hundreds of kids from nearby poverty stricken communities, that forced them to have to walk home, and depending upon which direction they’re traveling it meant walking through some of the toughest terrain in the city. Police officials claim that a tip was provided regarding a planned disturbance by school kids who chose Mondawmin as ground zero for a protest related to the Freddie Gray case. It’s not clear which city police official was responsible for directing hundreds of riot gear posturing police to the Mondawmin Mall, but that decision proved to be a terrible blunder and the catalyst that started mass disturbance throughout the city.

Confronting school kids with tactical gear without an initial provocation by them, has been described as excessive and cowardice on the part of city police by many following the Freddie Gray case. While those who seem to think they know how best to handle situations like the Baltimore unrest and are calling for a heavy handed approach to police “thugs” on the streets, they seem to be blinded by the systemic root causes of why school kids would want to fight police or authority figures in the first place. This generation of youth in Baltimore are the most vulnerable in recent memory. Faced with one of the most despicable educational systems in America, these children come from homes with the most uneducated parents in the nation, and coupled with city budgetary decisions these kids have had essentially every after school program limited by the lack of funding from the state or priority spending by public officials who have seemingly forgotten the kids of Baltimore.

Additionally, many of the kids in the city are accustomed to the kind of police brutality that resulted in the death of Freddie Gray. A police force that has been out of control for decades, got it’s marching orders during the Martin O’Malley administration, who as mayor bolstered a corrupt police force with directives that afforded police carte blanche authority during a “zero tolerance” approach toward policing the streets of Baltimore. In those years city police arrested over 100,000 citizens (primarily poor, black, and minority citizens) in a town populated with a little over 700, 000 people. The culture of policing in Baltimore has always been to the extent where police seemingly arrested people on GP (general principle), with laws like “loitering” (standing on a corner), “roving vagabound” (traveling within the confines of city limits without identification on one’s person), and “failure to obey” (essentially a tool for arrest without good cause) literally handcuffs citizens who easily fill police quotes for arrest in Baltimore.

For all of the ranting and raving about how tough the streets are in Baltimore city and challenges police face on the job, the police are still grossly ineffective in making charges stick in most criminal cases that go through the city’ judicial system. Some believe that Freddie Gray was in fact a casualty of Baltimore police inability to secure convictions of criminals in the city for even miner offenses. Police analyst call it “contempt of cop” when police engage a suspect who they have arrested and charged with the same crime over and over again, only to see them back on the streets engaging in the same illegal activity. Angered by what police who arrest Gray may have seen as a system that allows criminals to go free, crime experts say Freddie Gray who had a volume of previous arrest may have been handled harshly by police who knew him well.

Despite Gray seemingly being a nuisance to police in his community, he didn’t deserve to be denied proper medical care while in police custody. I am sure that the prosecutor’s office and lawyers for the  6 indicted officers will “duke” it out in court regarding how Freddie Gray died, but the decision to charge the police officers who interacted with Freddie Gray prior to his death while in custody, has already began to cause a major backlash from city police. The volume of violent crimes in Baltimore have spiked to an alarming 89%, and recently reached the most violent month in the city since 1999. Observers say that police morale in Baltimore is on a decline, with officers allegedly timid to do their jobs out of fear that their actions me cause serious repercussions.

To many who know the Baltimore policing community well, the low morale claim is simply a pile of “flying horse manure,” and liken such an absurd posture by disgruntled cops to a child crying over a glass of spilled milk. It’s common knowledge among those who have been taken for a ride, off to the steel bars that make up the old Baltimore city jail,  and which also historically in it’s own right has a storied past of brutality that dates back to the early 19th century. For years claims of excessive use of force and brutality were made against Baltimore police, and regularly fell upon death ears because police have always been deemed more credible over criminal suspects in the eyes of the law. When the the brutality began to reach epidemic heights, Baltimore adopted a policy of paying out monetary compensation to victims in the most heinous cases. The money secretly paid by the city is well below the amount of damages other municipalities have paid in similar cases of abuse by their respective police agencies.

Baltimore’s policy of secretly settling lawsuits related to abuse claims against it’s police department literally enabled the systemic police brutality of city residents, and now technology has caught up to abusive police culture, with just about everyone in society having a mobile device on their person capable of capturing video at a moments notice. The video of Freddie Gray being dragged by police to a prisoner transport vehicle while appearing injured, raises tremendous suspicion as to what actually happened to cause him resulting in his unresponsiveness, and subsequently die as a result of a severe spinal cord injury. The recording filmed by a witness is to many Americans, an anecdote exposing the rigors of how black suspects are treated by police, often killed, falsely accused of crimes, and resembles a “wow” moment similar to the scene of O.J. Simpson’s “dream team” defense lawyers playing a audio recording of Los Angeles police detective Mark Furman utilizing the “N word” repeatedly after having previously testified to not using such language in over twenty years.

A systemic culture of brutality, misconduct, and untruthfulness in the eyes of many Baltimoreans is the most appropriate description for police culture in the city of Baltimore. Police response to the indictment of six of their own may have resulted in serious backlash from the rank and file in retaliation toward the public for the Freddie Gray case. Some long time community leaders, scholars, and political activist have become suspicious of the volume of shootings that have occurred since the rioting ended. Over the Memorial Day holiday weekend 26 people were shot in Baltimore, 9 were fatal. In most of those cases there appear to be a pattern. The shootings were scattered throughout the city, but most appear random with no obvious motive for the violence, and in a few of the cases, witnesses observed gunmen wearing all black daunting a mask. There has been no signs of evidence to suggest that the shootings were related, but some observers are cautioning the public from drawing conclusions or dismissing the spike in shootings as typical violent culture in the city.

An East Baltimore resident told TPC that the shootings involving small children creates suspicion that the shootings are in fact random acts of violence stemming from gang or drug turf wars. “The age of the child victims in the recent spat of gun violence doesn’t fit the script. Hell, they’re not even old enough to be involved in serious trouble like shooting people.” The reports surrounding the Baltimore children shooting victims don’t indicate whether the kids were caught in the cross fire of some sort of shoot out, and some say that the kids were targeted by an unknown gunmen, who committed a deliberate act. Why would anyone want to randomly shoot kids. Moreover, some of the adult shootings over the holiday weekend in Baltimore appear suspicious also. A couple of people simply walked into local hospitals with gunshot wounds, and in at least two of those shooting incidents, witnesses observed two gunmen wearing all black. The very fact that some of the shooting victims were unaware of how, or who even shot them, coupled with the cops offering no motives for most of the shootings has led many observers and others from the public to really consider who is actually out there shooting people on the streets of Baltimore.

While most will reject some sort of conspiracy regarding high volumes of shootings in Baltimore, other major cities have caused serious debate and suspicion regarding who is actually doing the shooting as well. In Chicago a shooting involving a white suspect that was caught on a dash cam, and other reports from witnesses of shootings in both Baltimore and Chicago have fueled the debate even more. Take a look at the video below:

 

Some believe the perpetrator in the above video looked, and acted like a cop. Others believe that white supremist are actively conducting hate crimes in urban communities around the country in minority populated areas of major cities, in an effort to spark mass violence or race riots. One of the comments in the discussion portion of the Youtube Video even suggest that the police are on the streets committing violent crimes, and placing blame on the black community. The discussion is continuing to grow and the more violence that develops will cast even more suspicion on shootings in the black community. The assertion that such violence is on going deliberately to target black people may be completely dismissed by many absolute absurdity, but given the history Baltimore police, some residents in the city believe that such a scenario is quite capable of having derived from within the corrupt ranks of the Baltimore City Police Department.  Are the cops shooting people in the black community in retaliation for the growing public criticism of police culture related to the killing of black men around the nation?

 

 

The People’s Champion

I’m Crime Blogger David Adams

David Adams

Self proclaimed geek, Advocate for the homeless, Social Change, Crime Blogger, and mobile technology enthusiast. Recognized journalist and Human Interest Writer championing the plight of the masses whom are without a voice of their own.

More Posts - Website

Follow Me:
TwitterFacebookLinkedInGoogle Plus

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