Democrat Baltimore Mayor: Leadership Isn’t to Blame for Increasing Homicide Rate

Baltimore Mayor Bernard "Jack" Young speaks during a news conference announcing a new collaboration in an effort to reduce homelessness in Baltimore City, Tuesday, July 2, 2019, in Baltimore. Through the initiative, eligible Medicaid participants will receive permanent housing and services they need to prevent a return to homelessness. (AP …
AP Photo/Julio Cortez

Baltimore’s Democrat mayor says that local leadership is not to blame for the increasing homicide rate in the city, telling reporters Wednesday he is not the one “committing the murders.”

“That’s what people need to understand. I’m not committing the murders. The police commissioner is not committing it. The council is not committing it. So how can you fault leadership?” Mayor Bernard “Jack” Young said during a weekly press conference. “You know this has been five years of 300-plus murders, and I don’t see it as a lack of leadership.”

At least 296 people have been murdered this year in the city, pushing the city on track to having more than 300 homicides for its fifth consecutive year, the Baltimore Sun reported.

A youth sports director at the Catonsville Y was one of the latest victims, and Y in Central Maryland’s CEO John Hoey wrote in a Monday op-ed in the Baltimore Sun that the city’s homicide rate has to do with a “crisis of leadership.”

Young was asked Wednesday about the Hoey op-ed in the press conference, to which he responded that leadership was not to blame, adding that every city agency feels an obligation to reduce crime.

“We’re going to get the bad guys,” Young said. “We’re going to get them.”

Young took over as mayor this spring after the resignation of Democrat Catherine Pugh over an investigation into her business dealings.

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