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Baltimore community leaders question new police funding after another violent weekend

Posted at 9:21 PM, Oct 17, 2021
and last updated 2021-10-18 07:43:03-04

BALTIMORE (WMAR) — 16 shots. That’s what a neighbor heard in West Baltimore after three people were injured Sunday afternoon, adding onto a violent weekend.

Since Friday, at least 8 people were shot, 3 of them killed.

"Every day you hear someone is getting shot," said Rev. Keith Bailey, president of the Fulton Heights Community Association.

It has community leaders questioning the governor's new police funding initiative announced Friday.

Gov. Larry Hogan's "Refund the Police" initiative calls for $150 million to boost resources for police departments across Maryland, to increase crime control and victim protection services and offer pay raises.

Bailey hopes with the money comes action... more foot patrols and community engagement.

"I can’t see that we give people raises and I still see lives are being on sidewalks from not getting the proper protection that we need," said Bailey.

Mayor Brandon Scott responded to the initative, saying tackling violence in Baltimore requires more coordination, leadership and accountability, not just dispensing money. He also said the police department alone cannot stop gun violence.

Community advocate Angie Winder agrees. She wants to see funding spread out over different avenues, not just to police, to stop the cycle of violence.

"I do believe that there needs to be more police because there is a shortage but I also believe there should be more going into resources for our communities," said Winder.

She wants to see resources specifically for kids, including housing, mental health and education.

"I think we need to really gravitate to what resources are needed, hitting them right in middle school. There’s been lots of fights going on in the high school. We need to figure out what's needed in the school system," said Winder.

If you have information about these shootings, call Baltimore Police or Metro Crime Stoppers at 1-866-7-LOCK-UP to remain anonymous.