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Proposed bill would give Baltimore full control over police department

Similar bill was shut down almost two years ago
Posted at 9:04 AM, Jan 28, 2019
and last updated 2019-01-28 09:04:16-05

BALTIMORE — Another big change could be coming to the Baltimore City Police Department.

Delegate Talmadge Branch has proposed legislation that would give Baltimore City full control over its police department. BPD has technically been a state agency since it was established shortly after the Civil War in 1867.

Delegate Branch says that lack of direct city control has led to some of the problems in the troubled police department, including the disgraced Gun Trace Task Force and more.

RELATED: Two Gun Trace Task Force members sentenced to 7 years in prison

Legislation similar to Branch's has failed in the general assembly in previous years. In 2017, a similar bill, HB-1504, was shut down. It was passed by the Baltimore City Council, but was did not make it out of the general assembly.

The main concern in 2017 was that by giving the city control of their police force might leave them exposed to more lawsuit damages.

READ MORE: Bill to move Baltimore Police Department under city control not moving forward