Eyes on the street – Thursday, May 21st

Cool and dreary today, with highs only near 60. Temperatures will be back to the mid 70s tomorrow.


In a press conference yesterday, Baltimore Police Commissioner Anthony Batts said his police force has not been deliberately holding back during a recent surge of street violence, but that crowds of people watching the police has made it difficult for them to work, especially in West Baltimore. Officers are often calling in backup for even routine calls, as they find themselves surrounded by crowds armed with cell phones.

“It’s a scary day in America when a chief of police says people are watching us and we can’t do our jobs,” said activist Deray McKesson.


In East Baltimore, a man was killed and four people were wounded in a shooting along Monument Street yesterday evening, leading to a standoff with a suspect who hid inside a home on the 800 N. Linwood St. block.

From Tuesday night into early Wednesday, 11 people were shot over a 12 hour period, with 2 deaths. There have been at least 19 shot in Baltimore in the last 2 days. It’s presumed all of the victims were shot with guns, not cell phones.


Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake, both MD Senators, and Rep. Elijah Cummings went to the White House yesterday to speak with top presidential advisers about potential ways to help Baltimore following recent unrest and longstanding problems. No specific initiative or federal funds were promised during the meeting.


Yesterday afternoon, protesters marched from Sandtown-Winchester to Baltimore’s Fraternal Order of Police lodge in Hampden. FOP officials have been unwavering in their support of the ‘Baltimore Six’ officers charged in Freddie Gray’s death. Last month, local FOP leader Gene Ryan compared Freddie Gray protesters to a “lynch mob.”


Maryland’s largest private health insurance company, CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield, was hacked in June 2014, revealing the personal information of over a million members. The hacked database included names, birth dates, and email addresses, but did not include Social Security numbers.