Baltimore Police Deployment Seen As Key To Homicide Drop


In Baltimore’s most stubbornly violent districts, police have taken a decidedly different approach this year: staying put, says the Baltimore Sun. As the city marches toward a historic year-to-year drop in homicides, two of the biggest success stories are coming from the Eastern and Western districts, which have long been among the city’s bloodiest. Police say a major factor is the consistent presence of an enforcement team focused on developing intelligence on violent criminals who frequent those areas. Said Deputy Commissioner Anthony Barksdale: It’s a basic principle: cops at the right areas, at the right times. [] They’re out there to do one thing: get bad guys with guns.”

Police said there are many possible explanations for the decline in homicides this year, including greater coordination between local, state and federal authorities. In the past, they said, there was a tendency to shift resources in response to developing crises, a temporary solution that sought to prevent incidents from spiraling out of control but which potentially left other areas vulnerable. Members of the recently formed Violent Crime Impact Division’s enforcement team remain rooted in the two most violent districts. “If you map out violent crime and look at homicides and shootings in general, you’ll see they occur in the same geographical areas,” said Col. Dean Palmere, who heads the unit. “Once you identify and learn those individuals in those geographical boundaries, and you work up historical information, it gives you a guide – it gives you what window you should be looking in.”


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