Baltimore’s mayor asked the FBI to send in reinforcements Wednesday to help the city get its murders under control.
Mayor Catherine Pugh, speaking at a news conference, explained she went to the FBI’s Baltimore office for extra agents to join with police officers in combating a skyrocketing murder count, reports CNN.
“Murder is out of control. There are too many guns on the streets. We’re looking for all the help we can get,” Pugh said.
The city already has 101 murders for the year, a number not seen in almost 20 years. The mayor’s spokesperson warned the violence could rise in the summer months.
“The summers in Baltimore tend to be very violent,” Anthony McCarthy told CNN. “And the mayor wants to get a handle on all the murders, the flood of guns on the streets and the gang activity.”
On top of an over 30 percent increase in murders, the city is also experiencing a shortage in police officers. The city is operating with the lowest number of officers in about a decade — 2,500 police officers. Usually, the department has 2,900 officers.
“You get in a crisis mode like we’re in right now with crime out of control and not enough uniformed officers on the street, I would say it’s at a crisis point,” Baltimore’s Fraternal Order of Police President Lt. Gene Ryan said.
The department is paying out $1 million in overtime just to make up for the difference.
“We continue to work with all of our federal partners to address the repeat violent offenders who have been the source of much of the increased violent crime that we have experienced this year,” the Baltimore Police Department spokesperson told The Daily Caller News Foundation in a statement.
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