FBI Asks Baltimore Residents For Tips On Violent Crime
BALTIMORE (WJZ) -- The FBI Baltimore Field Office is asking the public to report violent crimes in Baltimore, especially since the summer months are a "historically violent time," according to authorities.
The call for public assistance comes as Baltimore is once again on track to surpass 300 homicides. With crime surging, many city residents are demanding action.
"The level of violence this community is seeing is not normal and it's not acceptable," Thomas Sobocinksi, the special agent in charge of the FBI Baltimore Field Office, said in a statement. "Kids should be able to play in a park, swim at a community pool, get a snowball on the corner without fear of being shot."
"The state of public safety in our city at this time is unacceptable," Baltimore city council member Eric Costello said earlier this month. "We are currently on track for over 350 homicides this year."
Baltimore city council member Robert Stokes agreed with his colleague on the tempo of the violence.
"It's out of control," Stokes said. "They shoot during the daytime. They shoot during the night. They killed a young lady who was pregnant in my district. They killed a young man who was celebrating his prom."
Just days before city councilors expressed dismay over continuous violence in the city there had been two mass shootings just hours apart.
Gov. Larry Hogan reacted to the violence by noting that millions of dollars had been spent on Baltimore's violence reduction efforts with little progress.
"It's unconscionable," he said. "We had a meeting with the police commissioner and mayor all of which we granted. We gave them $48 million for everything they asked us to do," Hogan said. "We continue to have this bloodshed, and I would question whether they have to go back and revisit their strategy and violent crime plan because it's obviously not working."
In response to the trend of violent crime, the FBI office in Baltimore has shifted a significant portion of its resources, including special agents and intelligence analysts. to focus on violent crime, according to authorities.
The office assists state and local law enforcement partners with investigations of homicide, aggravated assaults, carjackings, and robberies.
Additionally, the FBI leverages the intelligence gleaned from violent crime investigations to exploit the vulnerabilities of gangs and disrupt transnational criminal enterprises, federal officials said.
Baltimore is home to several specialty task forces which are a collaborative effort between federal, state and local law enforcement focused on specific crime problems and national security threats, according to authorities.
In addition, the FBI is working with federal, state, and local law enforcement to investigate and disrupt a rash of violent carjackings in and around the Baltimore area.
People can report tips to FBI Baltimore at (410) 265-8080, through the FBI tip line at 1-800-CALL-FBI (1-800-225-5324), or they could submit a tip online at tips.fbi.gov.
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