Unarmed guards to monitor "squeegee kids" beginning this week

BALTIMORE, Md. - It was a video posted to Facebook of a squeegee kid hitting a car downtown that re-energized the discussion.

The Downtown Partnership of Baltimore says it has fielded increased concerns from businesses and drivers, that some of the teens working to wash car windows in intersections like President and Lombard Streets are getting aggressive or even confrontational.

Their response will start early next week, deploying some of their staff at intersections along President Street to Pratt Street and Conway between Camden Yards and the Inner Harbor.

These guards will be unarmed and simply be there to supervise.

"I don't know why we wouldn’t want the Downtown Partnership,” Mayor Catherine Pugh said, “A great partner of the city to continue to help the city. That is what they are trying to do is help the city, help the citizens, protect people, make sure we are safe ...thumbs up."

Pugh, who says she is funding her own plan, welcomes the immediate assistance.

The mayor says what some of the teens are doing is illegal and she has put aside 1.7 million dollars to go toward sustainable solutions she says revolve around drug addiction, mental illness, and dropout rates.

Specifically, and in the short term though, the Downtown Partnership's idea will be the most visible beginning next week.

"Protecting the citizens of Baltimore is important,” Pugh said, “Once somebody touches somebody's car without their permission, no means no. When you touch somebody's car without permission, you’re committing a crime.

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