Friday, February 21, 2014

The Waste of Your Pants

Sixteen months ago Tammy Brown, director of O'Malley's office of Crime Control and Prevention, told me there was no DNA backlog.* Now apparently the backlog is a year long.

Jason Bulmer, one of a pair who allegedly killed HoCo blogger Dennis Lane, has pleaded guilty.*

The Daily Mail of the UK explored Baltimore's "people of the woods."

Ugh, these twits. Starve-a-me Galling-Flake is "appalled" by the "disproportionate high" arrest rates for black pot possessors, but refuses to offer an explanation for why police are arresting so many people, a plan or support for decriminalization or lower penalties.
     Meanwhile Anthony Brown has clawed back his announced support for decriminalization.  "He said he is advocating a 'slow-as-we-go" approach.' 'I'm at the red light checking the intersection.'" Could that man have any less personality or backbone?
   And Bernstein has been focusing on diversion,* so good on him for that. But how do we arrest fewer people?
    Can you imagine how much we'd make if it was a $100 ticket? Well, you don't have to, 1,800 people arrested a year = $18,000. Hellz, make it a $1,000 ticket. But it would still pale in how much we'd get from the feds for treatment centers, for the extra inmates at the jail ($40,000 an inmate), not to mention all the lobbying $ the house and senate get from defense attorneys and the like, I guess.

Read more here:

No good, very bad and horrible: The Tribune Company vis a vis the Baltimore Sun Media Group has bought the City Paper, the city's last non-niche independent newspaper and the last indie to be unloaded by Times-Shamrock of Scranton, PA. Everyone will be fired and the re-hires will be decamped to Calvert Street, and if they don't rehire Van Smith I will cut a bitch. Forecast calls for layoffs, shrinkage and lame attempts as being BuzzFeed.
Wow, we haven't had a shooting in a week! Oh wait, here's a police-involved shooting. And, wait,

A Digital Harbor nee Southern High School student was pistol-whipped, robbed by classmates.

Anthony Hopkins convicted in August 2012 Light Rail shooting of an unidentified "target." A witness said: "it appeared Hopkins had a handgun tucked into the waste of his pants"

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Rats and Men

So is this why robberies are down? A 16-year-old was robbed, and police refused to take a report unless his mother let him be taken to the station.* Notes the head of a social enterprise, "Often the neighborhoods that you live in determine the style of policing that you will get. If their house was broken into in Roland Park, they wouldn't have to go to the closest precinct. They're not going to prolong the trauma, make them stop what they're doing. It would be filed right then and there."

Two people were stabbed at a 7-11 in the 1300 block of Taylor Avenue in Towson (which is the 7-11 attached to a Subway that's in the parking lot of the Lowes at Taylor and Hillsway).

A 70-year-old woman was robbed in South Baltimore, police have released a video.*

And TMZ released a video that shows Ray Race dragging his finacee's unconscious body in Atlantic City.

"A key witness in a case against two Baltimore City police officers is the target of an incident involving a dead rat left on the windshield of his car." The rat recipient was Officer Crystal, who testified against the now-convicted officers who beat a burglary suspect.

Former Sun columnist Gregory Kane has died at 62.* Pointed and loath to suffer fools, he was a piquant counterpoint to Dan Rodricks' lugubrious laments back in the days where newspapers were mostly perused on pulp. The Sun proffers a hollow lament to their laid-off columnist's passing, but his columns in the Sun archives* are slim pickings-- where is the one where he imagined what Michael Phelps' bong might say? or the one about Dante Parrish (freed by the Innocence Project, went on to murder fey little teen Jason Mattison) or the one about That One Lady on The Jury Who Won't Convict a Black Man, or the one where he uses the term "brobdingnagian"? I suppose we'll have to make do with the one where he pronounces then-mayor  O'Malley unsmart yet not a racist for his "potty-mouth invective"* aimed at Pat Jessamy.
     After his move to the Examiner he seems happier and mellower, writing about movies and Christmas even as cancer put him in "excruciating and agonizing pain." You can see his conservatism taking a modern turn, adopting the name-calling so favored by the right ("Libthink,") calling BS on Amiri Baraka, Oprah and A&E, but still not willing to be totally co-opted by the right's talking points and remaining "soured" on the "War on Drugs."
   Anyway, we've lost a great mind today-- probably no one always agreed with him, but he always made his points with panache, a love of language and a deep and no doubt hard-won understanding of Baltimore life. He won a Pulitzer, too, for his articles about Sudan.*

There is justice, MD says Julius Henson's state senate campaign violates his probation.*

But not for poor defendants: Doug Gansler has asked the court to throw out their ruling that they're entitled to an attorney* at bail hearings.

From Wilmslow Road in Evergreen (aka the slums of Roland Park)--
At approximately 4:00 pm I arrived home and went upstairs briefly in preparation to run some errands.  I heard a strange noise and heavy footsteps downstairs only to find a man in a black coat in our kitchen attempting to steal one of our cats.  (I learned this evening that cats are target for thieves who use them to train pit bulls for dogfighting).  Fortunately, the man grabbed the larger cat who, although completely sweet natured, is armed with a good set of claws.  The man yelled out and the cat escaped out the door.  I ran after the man who pleaded total innocence but decided to chase after my pet rather than detain him.  He swiftly turned the corner heading west on Cold Spring and from a distance I could here him bizarrely saying out loud, "Here kitty, kitty..."  About 30 minutes later I was able to retrieve my terrified cat and bring him back in after a frantic search.  There are two lessons here for us: first, ALWAYS lock your door behind you, even if you're only going to be home a few minutes and second, be mindful of your cats.  They are targets.