There have been at least 233 homicides in 2020, compared with 242 this time last year, according to a database compiled by the Baltimore Sun.
“Those are not just numbers — those are people, those are families, those are communities,” Baltimore City Council President Brandon M. Scott said.
“This takes an overbearing situation of covid, of living in a city that is a birthplace of racial inequality via policy, in a city dealing with the issue of gun violence for longer than I have been alive, and it just exacerbates all of it,” said Scott, the Democratic nominee for mayor.
The spike in violence began just after midnight Sept. 6, when police were called to northwest Baltimore and found a 22-year-old man with gunshot wounds. Similar calls kept coming all week.
A 51-year-old woman was shot in the buttocks by an unknown man in a black mask Monday afternoon. On Wednesday, a dice game was interrupted when someone in a vehicle shot five people. And on Friday, officers arrived on Polk Street to find a 14-year-old boy suffering from at least two gunshot wounds. Police said investigators recovered a handgun from the boy. He was transported to Johns Hopkins Hospital, where he was pronounced dead. Police have not released the boy’s name.
Police spokesman Jeremy Silbert said Sunday that there were no updates in the investigation of the 14-year-old’s death. Community members have marked the spot where the boy was killed with star- and heart-shaped balloons. He was the seventh child under 18 to be shot and killed in the city this year.
The others who were killed in the past week include Troy Poindexter, 41; Shaheed Carter, 37; DeAndre Davis, 31; Arnay Mclean, 20; Tywon Rounds, 19; Malique Georges, 21; Dominique Whitby, 24; and Deion Jenkins, 24, according to the Sun’s database. The shootings happened across the city. Silbert declined to comment on whether any of the crimes were connected.
On Sunday, police announced they had made an arrest in one case, the Saturday night shooting deaths of two women, ages 46 and 23, in northeast Baltimore. The suspect, 24-year-old Dandre Woods-Bethel, exited his home, shot the women, then went back inside to call 911, police said. He has been charged with murder, assault and handgun-related counts. The names of the victims have not been released.
Scott, citing police revisions he hopes to institute if he becomes mayor, said the more time that passes without arrests in the other cases, the more he fears that additional shootings will follow.
“Gun violence does not just happen one incident to the next,” he said. “It is a disease, it is a cancer, that will spread.”