Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Wednesday August 23

Circuit Court judge Althea Handy has accepted a plea from convicted murderer Robert C. Griffin in the 1985 murder of Annie Cruse, who was found in Druid Hill Park. His counsel presented a DNA challenge which doesn't refute the prosecutor's case, but rather could muddy the waters. The State's Attorney indicates the conviction is solid and that it has credible witness(es). In any event, a so-called Alford plea was granted, acknowledging that the findings would likely be sufficient to sustain a guilty finding and commuting the sentence at time served. The Cruse family is not so pleased as Griffin.

Continuing coverage of the investigation of City Council President Sheila Dixon's affiliates in connection with improper diversion of City Council contracts appears in today's Sun article. Maybe the Council should consider passing an ordinance against stealing from the taxpayers. It's already illegal? Who'da thunk it? O'Malley's campaign promise of greater minority setasides raises concerns about corruption in his government in the Sun 's coverage.

Activist Bill Cosby to area excuse-makers: "You can't keep pointing the finger and saying, 'They're building more jails.' So what? Let 'em build 'em. Nobody says you have to go."
I heard that.

BCPD Det. William Welch was indicted by a Baltimore grand jury on rape and misconduct charges in connection with a 16 year-old prostitute he allegedly raped at the Southeast District station.

A robbery, a shooting, arrests on a murder warrant and an attempted murder with handgun warrant, and an arrest on an armed robbery in the police blotter today.

Homicides (5 this week per Murder Ink, 6 in fact) Total to date: 177

Mon. Aug 14 23 year-old Ryan Teel was murdered (176) and two other boys shot on the 400 block, Ilchester Ave. in tiny, 8 square block Harwood, part of Charles Village and host to six murders already this year. Note: another of the boys, Rodtinae Jones, has passed away as of this writing (177). The third victim is in critical condition with a collapsed lung.

Tues. Aug 15 27 year-old Harold Williams was shot on Clifton Ave. (175), as were two other young males.

Sat. Aug. 19 63 year-old Mary Page was stabbed at her home (174) on the 200 block N. Culver St.

Sun. Aug 20 26 year-old Pepe Bennett was multiply shot (173) on the 1800 block, N. Montford.
Sun. Aug 20 21 year-old William Tillman was found in the alley behing Spaulding Ave. shot several times. (172)

FYI: we are less than two-thirds through the calendar year and have already recorded more murders in shrinking Baltimore City than the entire State of Massachusetts does over the course of a year. That ain't right. T'aint right.


John Galt said...

So, Baltimore has finally figured out that harboring criminals is not a good idea? We'e gonna have ssoooooooo many vacancies.

Examiner article

Anonymous said...

John, baby, you rock my world!

Anonymous said...

I just saw the greatest ad on the side of q city garbage truck--photo of a lady in the bathtub as a dog takes a big poo on the bathroom floor next to the tub. Tagline (loosely translated)-- 'You wouldn't allow crap on your floor; keep your home Paris clean!'

I miss our old jingle; 'it's your Baltimore, don't traaaash it!'

Anonymous said...

*pokes at the blog*

Anyone out there?

Anonymous said...

"anyone out there?"

Yes... barely.

I can barely stand to read this blog anymore. Not enough background on crimes-- too much hot headed bitchin' about the city from someone who's grinding a big axe.

John Galt said...

Would you prefer that I replicate material in detail to which I have been including links? I'd been reluctant to just cut and paste all the detail for fear of being too lengthy, but if you all would prefer it, I'll do it.

As for the enmity toward the City administration, have I not laid out factual justification? I mean, am I misinterepreting? Maybe you see facts differently than I do, in which case I'm interested in your take on why these thing make for good policy.

I will resume publishing the results from court actions once a technological impediment is resolved.

Anonymous said...

Factual justification ...for your hatred of the city?

Yes, I suppose you have.

Many of us live here by choice. We like the city. We hate the crime. I don't know what this blog is really about but I admit it satisfied a rubbernecking impulse I have (for lack of a better term).

But lately, it has been getting tiresome to read a non-stop editorial gush of spleen juice. That's all.

Anonymous said...

Your post you put up earlier is down, you must have "saved as draft" that post. It also had a mistake, saying a body was found in St. Ann's, rather than St. Mary's as identified in the Baltimore Sun Police Blotter.

John Galt said...

Blast. My post got killed. Here was the gist of it:

I understand that my tiresome tirade could have that effect. The purpose of the blog is not to vent, but really to present a better understanding not just of what crimes occur, but also what factors in the judiciary and legislative branches are contibutory and Why does crime in Balto. function as it does. There's something dofferent going on here than in, say, Kent County. The purpose, therefore, is expository, rather than activist.

There are certainly times when I go overboard with unsolicited commentary, but I try (sorta) to constrain it to the Comments section.

That said, when you say you like the City but dislike the crime, I wonder which city you love. Mine, or yours?

On my street we've had several robberies and two shootings this week, plus another two murders (soon to be three) and a couple burglaries the prior week. Life's like that here.

It's probably not like that in your neighborhood, is it? So, you like your part of this city. You seem to think that there's no reason why people who choose to live in healthy neighborhoods should be distressed by what the other half has to deal with. After all, didn't they choose to live in a rotten place?

Well, you have first to decide whether safety is a public good or a private one. If private, then you move into a gated community and anyone who either cannot or does not choose to invest their entire life in buying a premier home is deemed to deserve what they get.

If, however, you think safety is a public service, a necessary and essential public service, then you and I are entitled to equal outcomes, independently of where eitherof us lives. Suppose in the same jurisdiction your kids' school has a 10:1 student-faculty ratio, while my kids in the 'hood get a 40:1 ratio. That's gonna violate the equal protection clause and I think we can agree that it's just wrong.

So, what's so different about public safety? Should my distant neighbors with the good public school be allowed to enjoy that advantage, or am I entitled to remind them that they're only benefitting because someone else is suffering?

There's a certain notion of equity which is independent of which side of the fence you happen to be situated upon. It's sometimes known as Harsanyi's Veil of Ignorance.

Think about it, please, before seeking my tacit silence as you enjoy the lion's share of the security in Baltimore. There is the other half.

Anonymous said...

another thing you could do, if you don't like this blog, is stop reading it.

John Galt said...

Yeah, but I don't want readers to stop visiting simply on account of my personality.

Anonymous said...

anon: No shit dude.
Galt: No shit dude.

No lie, the verification letters for this comment are "lynot".

Anonymous said...

please link to Bill Cosby press, I find it fascinating.

John Galt said...

Cosby article

Anonymous said...

Thanks and how freaking funny is that article? "Kids were falling over themselves just to hug him" [paraphrased].

Anonymous said...

"half" is an interesting word. Galt uses it a lot as in...

"my half" - hell on earth
"your half" - safely gated exclusionary community

In reality the southeast, like all parts of Baltimore, have more than their share of crime. Some blocks have a lot more crime than others, some blocks have very little crime.

But is it really fair to say that half is one way and half the other way? I think not.

This reminds me of a conversation I had with a lawyer once. We were talking about the lottery. He claimed that the chances of winning are 50%, because you either win or you don't win. Of course, we know that's ridiculous as he was merely counting the possible outcomes. But his remark reminds me of you, Galt. I feel that you are accusing me of winning the lottery (by being the other "half"). The reality is virtually all of us are holding losing lottery tickets here (except maybe for the gentleman in Paris).

John Galt said...

That's no gentleman, and she's not in Paris.

I don't know the proportion by geographic area, but the 'nice' parts of Baltimore contain less than 1/3 its population.

The 'nice' parts receive vastly more policing, relative to ambient criminality, than does the rest. If my area got police resources proportionate to its share of criminals, our manpower would go up by a factor of about eight.

My entire District has about one third the manpower needed to cover my area. Why? Basically, so that excessive coverage in 'nice' areas can keep the criminals here, in my neighborhood, where they 'belong'.

If one were to conduct the experiment of proportionately equalizing police coverage across neighborhoods, your area would probably become just about as unruly as the citywide average, which is awful

I conjecture that if you found yourself living with that for a few months, you'd start sounding a whole lot like me.

I understand that you think you live in a somewhat gritty edgy urban area. That's nothing like livin' in the 'hood. And about half of Baltimore is 'hood. I just think that you need to appreciate what the daily nightmares are here and how correctly furious residents are entitled to be because of the administration's failure to step up to it.

Out of curiosity, how many murders per block do you have per year, on average, where you live?

Anonymous said...

This is just so sad. I taught one of the victims you mention 2 years ago. Rest in peace Rodtinae...W.E.B. DuBois High School knows knows you were a wonderful kid that was at the wrong place at the wrong time...

I am tired of burying our future...they are just kids at heart we must do something...what future does Baltimore have if we just let them kill each other?

John Galt said...

His service was held today. He was at Betts Funeral Home. The third boy who was shot with him is in critical condition.

Some of these incidents will occur in any city of some size, but it's taken just too casually here. This town should have about one sixth the number of murders we've got. However, until citizens demand policing in large numbers, this administration will continue with business as usual.

Part of that is that citizens in the lower-impact communities must care enough about those in the higher-impact communities to demand the equal provision of public safety. Many in the affluent community here essentially sign off on the crime, provided it's not in their back yard.