About . . . . Classes . . . . Books . . . . Vita . . . . Blog. . . . Podcast

by Peter Moskos

May 20, 2015

Baltimore Homicides, pre- and post- riot

After the riots, the daily number of homicides in Baltimore more than doubled from 0.58 to 1.41. That's a lot more dead people. 0.8 per day. (For those of you not too good with math, that's almost one a day. And yes, Gotti, I'm looking at you.)

Click to embiggen.

The trendlines, pre- and post-riots, are in red.

[Updated May 21]


Adam said...

To what extent do you attribute this to officer apathy or apprehensiveness?

Moskos said...

I attribute it almost exclusively to cops (for good reason) not doing any proactive police work.

Adam said...

I agree, though I'm curious why you say "for good reason."

A) Because of the SAO's questionable false imprisonment charges against the two officers who arrested Gray?

B) Because the SAO may have overcharged the cops responsible for Gray's death?

C) Because the public doesn't actually *want* proactive policing?

All of the above? Other?

David Woycechowsky said...

Gr8 2 c u quoted in the Joe Crystal artie on the Buzzfeed:


Thought I'd link it up for Campbell and Gotti and David In Illinois.

Moskos said...

Thanks, David.
Adam, all of the above. But also simply: why risk getting in trouble if things were to go south, given all of the above.
If police in general and proactive police in particular are the problem, and seem to be the gestalt in Baltimore, there's a really easy way to solve that, from a police officer's perspective.

campbell said...

Also from a police officer's perspective, national headlines and outrage over shootings like Michael Brown,VonDerrit Myers, Tony Robinson in WI, etc send a message that the facts won't matter. We get paid by the hour and what, you think it's our neighborhoods those felons are running rampant in? Ha, no. If cops think they're going to get sued and raked over the coals for doing the right thing then they'll sit on their hands and answer enough calls to not get fired.

Adam said...

I agree. And in the case of many of these police shootings and in-custody deaths, there's been outcry over the discretionary police enforcement decisions that led up to them.

Why was Mike Brown accosted for walking in the middle of the street? Or Freddie Gray stopped for merely running away? Or Garner arrested for selling loosies? Or Levar Jones stopped for wearing no seatbelt? Or Walter Scott stopped for a broken center brake light?

If the people don't want the cops doing that stuff (which appears to be the case), then I think the police have an obligation to listen. But the public shouldn't then turn around and blame the cops for spikes in violence, as Baltimore Sun's editorial board has been doing to the BPD. They seem to think shootings are up because cops are "wary of aggressive law enforcement." I know the public rightly demands accountability for police brutality and misconduct, but isn't "aggressive law enforcement" also a big part of what people have been complaining about?

Anonymous said...

Police should have requirements for hiring and retention. President Obama should issue an executive order mandating the following. Police officers should have post graduate degrees in sociology, psychology, philosophy, anthropology or African American studies or women's studies.

Urban police applicant should successfully negotiate a series of psychological tests to reveal the applicants true character. Does the applicant want the police job for a stable career or excitement or to help those inferiors lift themselves from 400 years of racism?

Will the applicant police those with empathy, sympathy, altruism, tenderness and forgiveness? Will the police officer take a solemn vow to avoid any and all uses of force even at the risk to his or her own personal safety? Once the urban yoatz understand the 21st century progressive understanding educated police care there will be no violent police/suspect encounters.

President Obama earned the Nobel Peace Prize. President Obama should go to Baltimore and commit himself and Baltimore to a path of social and economic justice and Peace.