Baltimore mayor insists leadership is not to blame for homicide rate: ‘I’m not committing the murders’

The mayor of Baltimore says local leadership isn’t to blame for the city’s increasing homicide rate, telling reporters on Wednesday he’s “not committing the murders” himself.

Bernard “Jack” Young, who took office in May, said during his weekly press conference that “there’s not any lack of leadership of my part.”

“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?” he questioned. “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 killed so far in the major northeastern city in Maryland this year, according to The Baltimore Sun, putting the city on track to have more than 300 homicides for the fifth year in a row. Baltimore has a population of more than 600,000 people.

Baltimore cops have somewhat relaxed the intensity of their enforcement efforts in the wake of Freddie Gray’s 2015 death while in police custody and the protests that followed. Preliminary data suggests cops have been reporting fewer and fewer criminal incidents in the years since Gray died, leading many observers to draw a correlation between overly cautious law enforcement stemming from the heightened scrutiny.

CONTINUE @ FOX