Baltimore school police chief reports 45% fewer arrests in 2nd half of year


The number of arrests in Baltimore schools dropped 45 percent from the first half to the second half of the school year, city school police say.

Officers made 585 arrests in city schools in the four-month period ending Dec. 31, and 320 arrests from January to April, said School Police Chief Leonard Hamm.

His report on school crime, released this week, also showed a 10.7 percent drop in school crime, including handgun possession, theft and property destruction.

Hamm said no specific changes were made in disciplinary or arrest policies to caused the drop.

He attributed the decline to parents, teachers and school officials working together to spell out what is expected of students, not to police weeding out most of the problem students early.

"It's been a collective effort," Hamm said. "Everyone understands what the disciplinary code is and what is expected to make it work."

The number of handgun arrests dropped from 16 in the first four mouths to 10 for the second four months, he said.

He said statistics for previous years are considered unreliable because some criminal incidents were not reported to school police.

Pub Date: 6/05/98

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