BALTIMORE — After some back and forth, Gov. Larry Hogan and Baltimore City Mayor Brandon Scott will be meeting next week to talk about violent crime.
"Whether or not they agree, they need to understand each other," said Erricka Bridgeford, Baltimore Ceasefire co-founder.
Bridgeford is excited the two are sitting down for a meeting to address violent crime in the city. especially during a surge.
"Baltimore needs it because when there are things that need to be healed, when decisions are being made, when it’s crucial that those decisions really work for everyone, a collaborative process is the way to go," said Bridgeford.
So far in 2021, Baltimore City has recorded 108 murders, 12 more than this time last year.
On Tuesday, Hogan expressed his disappointment with city leadership, suggesting tougher laws and investing more in police.
Scott chalked Hogan's suggestions up to “MAGA talking points,” asking for a meeting over Twitter. Well now he’s getting one. Hogan said he called the mayor and police commissioner in to hear their crime plan in one week.
"We haven’t heard a plan yet from this current group and I'm anxious to hear what their plans are," Hogan said Thursday.
Hogan said he wants to work with them and provide the resources they need, after already giving $1.3 billion into Baltimore City for public safety.
"But they’re just not getting the job done and I think it’s the lack of a coherent crime strategy and part of that is the turnover: 4 mayors and 5 police commissioners in a 5 or 6 year period is not a great way to have consistency," said Hogan.
Bridgeford said while things have been in an upheaval before, we are on the path to stabilizing things.
"We didn’t get into this overnight. We are not gonna get out of it overnight," said Bridgeford. "We have a mayor who is really thinking about the root causes of violence from blight, to poverty, to racism as a public health issue."
The next Baltimore Ceasefire weekend starts Friday. There will be both in person and virtual events promoting peace and celebrating life.
Governor Hogan has also agreed to meet with State's Attorney Marilyn Mosby at a later date.
Marilyn Mosby released this statement concerning the meeting:
“I am grateful to Mayor Scott and Commissioner Harrison for their partnership and support [stattorney.org] for our policies as we move the city in a direction that focuses our limited resources on serious violent crime. I reached out to the Governor’s office this morning and was informed that the Governor intends to meet with me at some point in the near future to discuss crime in our city. I look forward to that meeting because I intend to inquire, if his concern is violent crime, how and why the Governor has cut significant grant funding to my office, impacting positions that focus on serious violent crime. Our grant for the Maryland Criminal Intelligence Network - which disrupts criminal networks operating in the city – was slashed. The Comprehensive Violence Prosecution grant – which funds the prosecutors who work on the most serious crimes in our city and support staff – was also slashed. These are grants that fund our prosecution efforts for the city's most violent repeat offenders. I plan on raising these issues with the Governor, as well as discussing the need for a more holistic approach to crime, topics I brought up in my September 2019 letter to the Governor.”