BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Baltimore is once again on track to top 300 homicides and with rising crime, many neighbors are demanding action.
“Once it gets dark, I don’t go out. Everywhere you turn there’s a shooting here, a shooting there,” said Cory, who lives in a southwest Baltimore community plagued by shootings.
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Cory, who declined to give his last name, suffered so many losses – friends and loved ones killed. He lives in a neighborhood filled with vacant homes and almost daily shootings.
“So much is happening today that it terrifies me. It really terrifies me,” Cory told WJZ interviewer Mike Hellgren.
One of the latest victims is Cartrel Baboolal. He was shot and found in a vacant house on a desolate stretch of Wilhelm Street last week.
At 11:21 p.m. on May 12, Mr. Cartrel Baboolal was shot and killed in the 1800 block of Wilhelm Street. Send an anonymous tip to 1-866-7-LOCKUP. If your tip leads to an arrest and charges, you could be eligible for a reward of up to $8,000. @BaltimorePolice pic.twitter.com/q6RbxwgjkF
— MCS Maryland (@MCSMaryland) May 18, 2022
“Dude, how did this happen to him? He’s a nice guy,” Cory said. “I have known several people who minded their own business and were still murdered.”
Hellgren asked if neighborhoods like Carrollton Ridge could improve. “It’s possible because there are good people in this neighborhood,” Cory said.
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The city council and the mayor presented crime-fighting plans this week. Mayor Brandon Scott urged civilians to handle non-emergency situations so officers can spend more time on serious and violent crimes.
Baltimore police unveil ‘SMART’ crime-fighting strategy as violence spikes; Hogan weighs in https://t.co/YubDGjFjF6 @wjz
—Mike Hellgren (@HellgrenWJZ) May 19, 2022
Some council members called for immediate action.
“The state of public safety in our city right now is unacceptable. We are currently on track for over 350 homicides this year,” said board member Eric Costello.
“It’s out of control,” said board member Robert Stokes. “They shoot during the day. They shoot at night. They killed a young woman who was pregnant in my neighborhood. They killed a young man who was celebrating his prom.
🚨The reward just doubled to $16,000 per Governor Hogan @wjz https://t.co/zPYJLlVpFC
—Mike Hellgren (@HellgrenWJZ) May 18, 2022
Jasmine Brunson, Jr. was just 17 when he was shot at her prom after party.
Council members said 130 CitiWatch cameras were not working at a press conference Thursday.
They said the detectives’ workload was too high and the crime lab did not have enough resources to process evidence causing delays in solving crimes.
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“We know this is a major problem. This is why we continue to insist on it every day. We are going to do it. The police department has already seized nearly 900 firearms this year, which is an increase from last year,” Mayor Brandon Scott told WJZ on Friday. “We are not going to rest until we make sure that the people who do these things are held accountable and stop them in any way possible.”