Balto. Co. police have not resisted community policing...


January 10, 2001

Balto. Co. police have not resisted community policing

The Sun's otherwise well-reported article on community policing includes the line: "Police Chief Terrence B. Sheridan has generally resisted community policing during his four and one-half years as chief" ("Balto. County police effort is expanding, Dec. 25).

That assertion is unattributed, unsupported and untrue. It is contradicted by the information in The Sun's own story and by my record as chief of police in Baltimore County since April 1996.

During that time, the Baltimore County Police Department, under my leadership, has repeatedly shown its commitment to community policing.

As was reported, the grant for the Business Patrol Initiative (BPI) is the ninth such grant since 1994. These grants have allowed us to hire more than 150 officers. I have also used state and county resources to enhance community policing efforts.

We have expanded our network of Police Athletic League Centers to work more closely with the county's youth. We have established substations in Precinct 6 and Precinct 3 to put our officers in the midst of the communities they serve.

And, starting Jan. 1, I decentralized our traffic units to create community-based traffic enforcement.

Each of our precincts has uniformed community outreach units and plainclothes detectives who deal directly with residents and neighborhood groups in successful partnerships.

I fully recognize the value of community policing and have worked energetically to enhance its role in the police department's law-enforcement mission.

Terrence B. Sheridan


The writer is chief of police for Baltimore County.

Don't fire Graziano for one minor mistake

I was very surprised that The Sun dedicated its entire Jan. 3 letters section to readers outraged about City Housing Commissioner Paul T. Graziano.

We all know what Mr. Graziano did was wrong, but must we call for his termination for such a minor incident?

I have enough confidence in our mayor to know that he weighed all the facts in this case and decided on the best course of action for the city of Baltimore.

We forgave our president for a major indiscretion, yet demand the end of the career of our own housing commissioner for a minor blunder.

Remember people, this is Baltimore -- not Salem, Mass.

Sean Somers


City must embrace its diversity with pride

A city that strives to be the "Greatest City in the World" must take a strong stand against any form of discrimination.

As Baltimore works to retain and attract residents, strengthen neighborhoods and attract new investment and talent to build the "Digital Harbor," we should send a clear message that we are a gay-friendly city. Ambiguity on this point could tarnish our reputation nationally.

Belair-Edison and many city neighborhoods welcome, even vie for, gay and lesbian homeowners and renters. In our diverse neighborhood, gay residents play leading roles in strategic planning, economic development and social activities.

As a city we need to be passionate, proud and vocal in embracing and promoting our diversity.

Barbara Aylesworth


The writer is executive director of Belair-Edison Neighborhoods Inc.

Reservoir Hill-area needs incentives for revitalization

We appreciate The Sun's recent editorial "Bolton Hill transformation" (Jan. 5), which referred to "nearby Reservoir Hill."

We moved to Reservoir Hill in 1980 and restored our home, as did others in our neighborhood. However, restoration has not taken hold as we had hoped.

In the 2500 block of Madison Ave. six of the 15 houses (40 percent) are boarded up. This does not encourage new homeowners to come to our community.

We hope the city will continue to offer incentives to first-time buyers so Madison Avenue, once considered the boulevard to Druid Hill Park, will become a safe, beautiful and comfortable neighborhood.

Mary Jane O'Brien

John O'Brien


New Cabinet will be abler than Clinton's advisers

Conservatives don't preach against quotas in the name of diversity, they preach against quotas for the sake of finding the best person for the job.

That is just what George W. Bush has done in filling his Cabinet.

It is no more of a monolith than President Clinton's Cabinet was, it just comes from a perspective that is completely opposite of the viciously partisan, uncompromising, close-minded, ultra-left-leaning liberals. ("A political monolith in Bush's Cabinet," editorial, Jan. 4)

Former Sen. John Ashcroft will be a breath of fresh air compared with Janet Reno's Justice Department.

The only ones who will oppose his conformation are those afraid of what Mr. Ashcroft may uncover after eight years of lies, fraud and cover-up.

Robert Balderson


The Colts' fight song honored the casket ...

Many thanks for Jay Apperson's wonderful article on the funeral Mass for John Steadman held at St. Jude Shrine last Friday ("A monumental farewell," Jan. 6). Mr. Apperson's description made the final tribute to Mr. Steadman's life and resurrection one to remember.

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