Baltimore’s crippling race riots are hurting police: 15 Baltimore cops have been injured, with two remaining in the hospital with more severe injuries.
But, even worse, Baltimore police claim that cops may be in danger all across the nation–and other cities are already taking precautions.
Protests that begun after the death of Freddie Gray, a 25-year-old black man who was in police custody, have turned increasingly violent over the last few days.
In addition to the 15 cops injured, two police cars were destroyed, a CVS in downtown Baltimore was looted and torched, and there have been reports of violence and vandalism across the city.
“What we see tonight that is going on in our city is very disturbing,” Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake told reporters. “Too many people have spent generations building up this city for it to be destroyed by thugs who–in a very senseless way–are trying to tear down what so many have fought for.”
Worse, it’s likely these riots will get worse before they get better: Baltimore police determined that there was a “credible threat” of escalating gang violence against cops not just in Baltimore but nationwide. They claim that rival gangs are teaming up to target police officers–which could make this bad situation substantially worse.
Other cities have begun to take precautions. In Los Angeles, cops have been ordered to ride in pairs–so they can better defend themselves.
The riots have been escalating ever since Gray’s funeral on April 27.
On April 12, Gray had been taken into custody for possession of a switchblade. Gray had been previously convicted of drug crimes.
Within an hour of his arrest, Gray became unconscious–and, at the hospital, it was determined his spine was “80% severed” at his neck, along with three fractured vertebrae, and an injured larynx.
It’s unclear exactly what happened: officers claim that Gray was arrested “without force,” but the Baltimore police commissioner said that the officers “failed to get [Gray] medical attention in a timely manner.”
No unarmed American should have to fear death at the hands of police–but no American should see their streets and livelihoods burned down in front of them, in the pursuit of so-called “justice.”
While it remains to be seen what will happen in Baltimore, it’s a tragedy that so many of these “protestors” can’t understand that more violence won’t solve the problems in our nation–and certainly won’t help stop police brutality.