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By Larry Carson, The Baltimore Sun | January 13, 2011
Although homicides in Howard County rose from two to four last year, the relatively low violent-crime levels declined, according to police statistics that mainly covered the first 11 months of the year. Rapes were down from 43 to 34 for the entire year, a 20 percent decline, according to police spokeswoman Sherry Llewellyn. She added that although the number of homicides rose, all four cases last year involved domestic violence. Howard typically has a half-dozen or fewer homicides in a year.
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NEWS
April 3, 2014
Replacing the current pre-trial release system is going to be a bear ( "Getting out of jail free," March 26). Today, District Court commissioners set most bails. But since the Maryland Court of Appeals ruled that defendants are entitled to be represented by counsel at those hearings, state legislators have been trying to get around the requirement by proposing that pre-trial release investigators use a computerized assessment tool to determine if a person is eligible for release.
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NEWS
By Walter F. Roche Jr. and Walter F. Roche Jr.,LOS ANGELES TIMES | September 11, 2006
WASHINGTON -- The rates of homicide and firearm violence jumped upward in 2005, ending a decade of decline, according to a new U.S. Justice Department report that reinforces recent warnings by law enforcement officials. The National Crime Victimization Survey, released yesterday, found that nationwide, killings increased 4.8 percent, from 16,140 in 2004 to 16,910 last year. The biggest increases were reported in the Midwest and the South. Experts said these increases buttress reports from the FBI and many mayors and police chiefs that violent crime is beginning to rise after a long decline.
NEWS
By Justin Fenton, The Baltimore Sun | March 21, 2014
About 200 members of Baltimore's Jewish community packed courtroom benches Thursday, lined walls and stood single-file in aisles - some reading religious texts - amid growing concern over the potential release of the man who killed an 11-year-old girl in 1969. Emotions remain high in Northwest Baltimore more than 40 years after the murder of Esther Lebowitz. The latest appeal by Wayne Stephen Young, found guilty in her death and sentenced to life in prison, drew wide protest because a recent appellate court ruling has led prosecutors to release dozens of people convicted decades ago. The state is fighting to keep Young, now 68, locked up. In court Thursday, Assistant State's Attorney Antonio Gioia cited the disturbing nature of the crime - Lebowitz, missing for two days, was found beaten to death with a hammer.
NEWS
By David Simon and Michael James and David Simon and Michael James,Staff Writers | August 7, 1992
Rushing to implement a new, violent-crime task force even before planning for the unit is complete, Baltimore police officials last night sent a dozen extra patrol officers into the most crime-ridden areas of East and West Baltimore in an effort to reassure beleagured residents."
NEWS
March 18, 2012
Tricia Bishop misrepresented my research as well as the debate over concealed-carry laws ("Gun laws' sketchy effect," March 11). She makes it appear that I am only "one economist" who claims to find that right-to-carry laws reduce violent crime. By now, a vast body of research supports my results. Among peer-reviewed national studies by criminologists and economists, 18 find that right-to-carry laws reduce violent crime, 10 claim no effect, and just one claims one type of crime temporarily increases slightly.
NEWS
April 2, 2013
The recent editorial in The Sun ("Stopping the killing," March 24) argues the police should be focusing on guns and violent offenders. Clearly, there is value in having the police take as many guns off the street as possible, and strategies that engage hard-core violent offenders make a difference. That is why Commissioner Anthony Batts and his command staff have made guns, gangs and violent offenders the key elements of a strategy with five areas of focus aimed at reducing the unacceptable level of homicides in the city.
NEWS
March 30, 2013
Several recent articles in The Sun have focused on Gov. Martin O'Malley's proposed assault weapons ban ("O'Malley battling for gun controls," March 22). These articles all seem to have a common theme, the push for Marylanders to get on board the governor's agenda. It seems this push for support comes after many thousands of Marylanders who support their Second Amendment rights and disagree with Mr. O'Malley's approach to the state's violent crime issue have stood up and made their voices heard.
NEWS
June 22, 2012
The city health officials who plan to strip non-conforming liquor stores of their licenses because of a Johns Hopkins University study linking them to violent crime may be confusing correlation with causation ("City targets liquor stores", June 18). The distinction is important, because if the liquor stores aren't what's causing the crime, then closing them won't cause it to drop and could even exacerbate the problem. Vacant properties, for example, also correlate with violent crime.
NEWS
By Luke Broadwater, The Baltimore Sun | February 9, 2014
Confronted with a bloody start to 2014, Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake will keep police curfew centers open longer, offer larger rewards for gun crime tips and implement a full-scale "Operation Ceasefire" program in Baltimore - a strategy that's been successful in other cities. The mayor plans to focus the majority of Monday afternoon's State of the City speech on what her administration is doing to address the violence. Homicides are up by 80 percent in 2014 compared with last year, though total violent crime is down by 29 percent.
NEWS
By Ian Duncan, The Baltimore Sun | March 14, 2014
A man who pleaded guilty in connection with the fatal beating of financial analyst Zachary Sowers in Southeast Baltimore has been indicted on a federal gun charge. Arthur Jeter, 24, was among three teens who pleaded guilty to robbery and agreed to testify against a fourth man in the attack in exchange for lesser sentences. Jeter was sentenced to eight years, and was released on good-behavior credits after serving about five years. At the time, the case led to a backlash against then-State's Attorney Patricia A. Jessamy, which her successor, Gregg L. Bernstein, invoked Friday by saying the punishment was not enough.
NEWS
By Colin Campbell, The Baltimore Sun | March 12, 2014
For Raymond Kelly, fixing the issue of crime in his Sandtown Winchester neighborhood seems simple enough - make sure police and community leaders are visible. "Drug dealers on the corner don't want to be seen," the community organizer said. "We want to be seen. " Kelly and his wife, Melissa, have run "No Boundaries," a seven-neighborhood community improvement coalition, for about six years. On Wednesday night, Kelly petitioned Baltimore Police Commissioner Anthony Batts to join them at their monthly meeting and discuss how police could help their cause.
NEWS
February 17, 2014
My husband and I live two blocks from where the break-in and murder of a Canton woman took place ( "Second teen denied bail in killing ," Feb. 4). Surprisingly, it's not the murder that scares me, it's the lack of response by our city officials to make some simple changes that would help with crime. One street light and two park lights have been out for many months, and it's pitch black on our street at night. We've reported this repeatedly. The city told us it's Baltimore Gas and Electric's responsibility to fix the street light while BGE said it's the city's responsibility, and there's no movement at all with the park lights.
NEWS
By Yvonne Wenger and Luke Broadwater, The Baltimore Sun | February 10, 2014
Baltimore will open several year-round, 24-hour centers to enforce the city's curfew for children and teens and connect troubled youths to services under a plan Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake unveiled Monday in her State of the City address. Youth Connection Centers, modeled after similar programs in Washington and Miami, will replace the city's curfew center in the Barclay neighborhood that operates from June to August. The first center is expected to open in the northwest or southeast section of the city by this summer, the mayor said.
NEWS
By Luke Broadwater, The Baltimore Sun | February 9, 2014
Confronted with a bloody start to 2014, Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake will keep police curfew centers open longer, offer larger rewards for gun crime tips and implement a full-scale "Operation Ceasefire" program in Baltimore - a strategy that's been successful in other cities. The mayor plans to focus the majority of Monday afternoon's State of the City speech on what her administration is doing to address the violence. Homicides are up by 80 percent in 2014 compared with last year, though total violent crime is down by 29 percent.
NEWS
By Jim Giza | February 7, 2014
Before I retired as a sergeant from the Baltimore Police Department in 1996 after 23 years of service, I had worked in a variety of staff positions. Given my background, I probably know more than the average Baltimorean about how difficult a job being the police commissioner can be without a competent staff to offload the pressure to comment on every criminal incident occurring in the city. Recent quotes by city Commissioner Anthony Batts tell me he needs a surrogate like the late Dennis Hill - a former journalist who served for 22 years as the director of public information for the police department - to help him vent his spleen about how he feels about violent crime in the city in a much more constructive, less defensive manner, and perhaps tutor him about how to talk extemporaneously.
NEWS
By Jessica Anderson, The Baltimore Sun | January 16, 2014
Towson University student Mykeal Spivey was walking toward his off-campus apartment when three men came up from behind, demanded his cellphone and attacked him when he refused. Spivey noticed the blood as he collapsed against a light pole; he hadn't realized they had stabbed him. "I like to tell myself it was just odds. These things happen every now and then, unfortunately," said Spivey, 25. "Initially, everyone assumed that it happened downtown, not in Towson. " The attack was one of several violent incidents that have shaken the Baltimore County seat in recent months, and police and community groups have stepped up public safety campaigns in response.
NEWS
By Justin Fenton, The Baltimore Sun | December 29, 2013
At 1:30 p.m. on a sunny December weekday, just down the hill from prestigious City College high school, shattered glass and blood stained the street. Neighbors and passersby gathered on the fringes of the crime scene and watched as police officers began investigating the killing of 30-year-old Devlon Cates Jr. Their faces and words showed a mix of dismay and boredom. "I bet [the killer] was wearing a mask," a young woman said. The victim "probably didn't even see it coming," her friend surmised.
NEWS
By Justin Fenton, The Baltimore Sun | February 6, 2014
A 12-year-old girl was robbed at gunpoint while walking to her Southeast Baltimore school last week, police confirmed after the school's principal sent parents a letter about the incident. The girl, a student at Patterson Park Public Charter School in the first block of N. Lakewood Ave., was walking to school in her uniform about 7:30 a.m. Jan. 28 when a man wearing a ski mask approached her with a gun drawn and demanded her cellphone. The incident took place at Rose Street and Fairmount Avenue, and the gunman fled eastbound on Fairmount Avenue, police said.
NEWS
By Jessica Anderson, The Baltimore Sun | January 16, 2014
Towson University student Mykeal Spivey was walking toward his off-campus apartment when three men came up from behind, demanded his cellphone and attacked him when he refused. Spivey noticed the blood as he collapsed against a light pole; he hadn't realized they had stabbed him. "I like to tell myself it was just odds. These things happen every now and then, unfortunately," said Spivey, 25. "Initially, everyone assumed that it happened downtown, not in Towson. " The attack was one of several violent incidents that have shaken the Baltimore County seat in recent months, and police and community groups have stepped up public safety campaigns in response.
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