It’ll be muggy today, with highs in the low to mid 90s. More of the same tomorrow. There’s a ‘Code Orange’ air quality alert for today and tomorrow.
A group of law enforcement leaders, including US Attorney Rod Rosenstein, Baltimore State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby, and Baltimore Police Commissioner Anthony Batts, announced indictments for conspiracy and other charges for 14 Black Guerrilla Family gang members. The new charges relate to a host of alleged BGF crimes, including drug trafficking, extortion, robbery, witness intimidation, and murder.
During the press conference, Batts denied that a recent drop in arrests and surge in homicides were related to a work slowdown rumored by anonymous BPD officers in a CNN interview and elsewhere. Batts also said that he is looking into “creative solutions” to respond to the department’s homicide clearance rate (the rate at which homicides lead to charges) dropping to only 40% (it’s normally closer to a not-so-great 50%).
Colleen Martin-Lauer, fundraiser for Stephanie Rawlings-Blake since 2007, is parting ways with the mayor ahead of the 2016 election. Martin-Lauer is a go-to fundraiser for many local politicians, including Martin O’Malley, Anthony Brown, City Council members Brandon Scott, Edward Reisinger and Nick Mosby (SA Marilyn Mosby, too). This could mean that Martin-Lauer intends to fundraise for another candidate.
Baltimore home sales were up in May over last year, but 29% of the homes sold in the city were distressed in some way (foreclosures, short sales).
A quarter of Baltimore residents live in food deserts, according to a new report from the Baltimore Food Policy Initiative. A food desert is an area without a nearby supermarket, where residents also struggle with poverty and lack of transportation. The city is considering giving tax breaks to grocery stores that open in underserved neighborhoods and making adjustments to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program to make healthy food more accessible.
McCormick & Co., local maker of Old Bay and spice industry giant, is being sued by Watkins, a competitor, for allegedly under-filling pepper tins. Watkins is seeking an injunction against McCormick and monetary damages that are nothing to sneeze at.