On the 4th of July, a city out of control

July 06, 2011

While the issues we faced pale in comparison to the stabbing and the 4-year-old child being shot near the Inner Harbor ("Shooting, stabbing follow city fireworks," July 5), the utter chaos in and around Patterson Park adds proof that the city is out of control with a grossly ineffective police force and clueless mayor.

My neighbors and I called 911 and the Southeast police district directly to report dozens of individuals lighting high-powered fireworks throughout the night, endangering families who came to the park to watch the official fireworks display. The police failed to respond until a tree caught fire around 9:30 p.m. When they finally responded, the driver of the fire engine had to blow his horn to keep the policeman from driving past the scene. Ultimately, the police ignored the nearly constant lighting of high powered fireworks, but we refused to put our heads in the sand. The police responded again to further 911 calls well after midnight. But of course, in what has become seemingly police protocol, they refused to make any arrests allowing the drunken group to walk off with high-powered fireworks and equipment.

Clearly, the mayor and police commissioner should be held accountable for their incompetence and open refusal to protect the citizens of Baltimore. I encourage you to do a follow up articles on the chaos and lack of police response throughout the city.

Gene Curran, Baltimore

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