Baltimore police are so strained by the wave of violence in the city they’re asking the feds for help.
Ten federal agents will work with Baltimore’s homicide division to help solve a growing number of murder cases, many of which are part of a swell in violence since the Freddie Gray riots in April, The Baltimore Sun reports.
“The only people making good now are the morticians,” U.S. Democratic Rep. Elijah Cummings said. “And I say our city is better than that. It’s not just the murders and the shootings. I’m begging you, put your guns down.”
With 42 homicides, May marked the beginning of a rise in crime just after the riots over the death of Freddie Gray. The homicide numbers have been dismal, and July saw more murders than the city has had in a single month over the last 43 years.
There are currently 20 agents from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives working in Baltimore to help with the rise in crime. The department has a 36 percent clearance rate for murders and nearly 200 killings this year.
“We’re not sitting still in Baltimore,” Interim Police Commissioner Kevin Davis said in a press conference. “This is not something we are satisfied with happening to us as a city. We’re punching back, and we’re going to continue to punch back as creatively and innovatively as we can.”
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