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by Peter Moskos

May 28, 2014

Baltimore police commissioner disarms man at gunpoint, with punch to face

I had a dream last night that I was back walking foot patrol in the Eastern District, south of Monument St. It was hip and happening! There were cool restaurants and clubs and even a nice museum. Everybody on the street was telling me, and I quote, "It's like the next Berlin." I was loving my job.

And then I woke up. Oh, Baltimore. Oh, Eastern District.

Good on Batts and his three-person detail for taking action. From the Sun:
Police Commissioner Batts responded and removed his service weapon and placed it against Mr. Moultrie's head," Diener wrote. "Mr. Moultrie would not release the gun from his grip, so Police Commissioner Batts also attempted to pull the gun from Mr. Moultrie's hand. Police Commissioner Batts then hit Mr. Moultrie with a closed fist in the face.
The Commissioner was leaving the scene of a police-involved shooting. But I can't help but wonder if Batts would be willing to charge another officer who used these same tactics, which, best I remember, were not taught in the police academy.

Moultrie, according to the article, was convicted in October 2013 for drug dealing and received a sentence of 20 years. So what is he doing out on the street in May, 2014? "All but two days of the sentence was suspended." Twenty years becomes two-days time-served?! Oh, Baltimore. "The new arrest has triggered a violation of his probation." I should hope so.

Meanwhile I give a Cop in the Hood "Bad-Mother Award" to Lisa Moultrie and Aunt Michelle Davis, whose only problem with the whole situation seems to be that their armed drug-dealing baby was hit and threatened. Said the aunt, "I wasn't there... I know he was armed, but once they had him retrained, what was the point of the commissioner coming over there putting a gun to his head?!" I mean, can't an armed man walk around in peace? Or at least be gently encouraged to disarm while at the same time maintaining his dignity and respect?

This happened at 2300 Monument, which google street view now tells me is Hernandez Grocery. Back when I was a cop, if I remember correctly, this joint was rather surprisingly owned by a cop's family. What I do remember is that it was robbed on Christmas Day, 2000, by a man with a gun who got away with $900. At first I didn't understand what the robbed people were telling me because they kept saying the robber "climbed over the bullet-proof glass." I had been in this place many times and I didn't understand how you could climb over bullet-proof glass. And then I finally saw that there was an "over," like a foot, 12 feet above the ground, between the top of the glass and the ceiling.

I remember this night because it was my only Christmas policing and everybody was busy, fussing, and getting in their last minute Christmas robbing. An hour before the store got robbed, at the same location, I had caught two 13-years-old kids for armed robbery. They were like 4-feet tall and looked even younger than their age.

But what really struck me from that night wasn't spider-man with a gun or 13-year-olds robbing people at knife point. It was the fact that these two 13-year-olds had serious rap sheets for offenses including crack dealing, attempted rape (1st degree sexual assault), and successful rape (2nd degree sex assault). And they had started (or at least started getting caught) were 11-years-old.

1 comment:

Alex King said...

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