In Southeast Baltimore, residents and developers are fending off an onslaught of property crimes, says the Baltimore Sun. Police attribute the trend to revitalized neighborhoods attracting crimes of opportunity. Homicides and shootings also have increased over last year, with 86 killings so far this year – 13 more than in the comparable period last year. For a city with many neighborhoods marked by redevelopment and soaring real estate prices, police and residents are now finding that crime trends appear to be shifting. Some community leaders are questioning whether officers are being deployed effectively as police face staffing shortages in every district.
With overall crime in decline recently, the latest trends are cause for some concern at City Hall. Mayor Martin O’Malley – who is running for governor in a contentious race in which city issues are at the center of debate – said he is “open to ideas that work” when it comes to deploying police officers. Citywide, total crime is up 4 percent this year. In some Southeast Baltimore neighborhoods, residents and developers are dealing with an outbreak of burglaries. Residents are also concerned about nuisance crimes. “I guess it’s more the ‘quality of life’ crimes,” said Ed Marcinko, president of the Upper Fells Point Improvement Association. “People passed out drunk on the streets.”