The new year was only 16 hours old before Baltimore, Maryland, racked up its first murders of 2018. This news comes on the tail of a 2017 that saw the city suffer its highest murder rates ever.
Two residents were killed, one just before 4PM on January 1, and the other two hours later, according to Baltimore’s CBS affiliate.
Baltimore Police reported that the first murder occurred in the 2000 block of Eagle St. on New Year’s Day at 3:40 PM. The victim was shot in the neck and taken to the hospital where he later died.
The second victim was shot and killed in a parking lot in the 5100 block of Goodnow Rd, police said.
In the second incident, another man was wounded but is now in stable condition.
The two latest murders started the clock running for 2018, but 2017 already rang in with the city’s worst murder rate ever.
Eve as the number of residents in the city declined, the murder rate has spun out of control, CBS reported.
“A surge of homicides in the starkly divided city resulted in 343 killings in 2017, bringing the annual homicide rate to its highest ever – roughly 56 killings per 100,000 people,” CBS said. “Baltimore, which has shrunk over decades, currently has about 615,000 inhabitants.”
The murder rate has climbed during each of the last three years best by demonstrations by Black Lives Matter-styled groups protesting the city’s police. For years, now, these BLM groups have demanded that police be pulled back from the neighborhoods, and the city has obliged.
But now, despite city officials obeying the desires of residents, African American activists are complaining that police have abandoned their duty and allowed the murder rate to spin out of control.
Follow Warner Todd Huston on Twitter @warnerthuston