Witnesses report group of around 30 to 40 juveniles confront police
Prior to abruptly walking away form his post as superintendent of BCPS, Dr. Dallas Dance gave a rousing assessment of his Team BCPS concept in his “State of the Schools” speech. The address focused on the message of diversity; however, in reality, there are underlying racial tensions in at least one of the newest high-schools in Baltimore County.
And those tensions boiled over into violence in the streets, ignoring Dr. Dance’s messages and pitting black against white and other ethnicities.
I was aware of this issue because, as an investigative journalist, I often keep in touch with people at Dundalk High School. What I was sent today via cell phone videos and text messages was disturbing. Images of students being assaulted and text messages of a specific meeting ground to settle angry disputes.
The staging area was Dundalk Middle School.
According to witnesses on the scene of the latest confrontation, as many as 40 juveniles – white, black, and Hispanic – were blocking traffic as the fighting bled into the traveled portion of the highway. In the thick of things, a juvenile laid prone in the middle of the road and failed to move, causing a large traffic backup.
Witnesses further described the first responding police vehicle being engulfed in a sea of juveniles. The officer stopped in the middle of the road and turned on lights and the siren. Shortly thereafter, two other officers arrived on the scene; within moments, those officers were also engulfed in a sea of aggressive juveniles.
One woman with two small children caught in the middle called 911 telling the dispatcher that the officers needed help. (Hint to 911: Just send the cavalry and cut the small talk.)
After a response that included 10 additional officers, order was finally restored.
I contacted the Dundalk Precinct and was told that police were aware of the situation and were working to resolve the issue.
Further interviews with witnesses said the problem is now spreading down into the Main Street Dundalk Shopping Center, with much more fighting and cursing.
I wonder what the DRC has to say about this. Maybe the DRC should take some of that $415,000 in grant money from Councilman Crandell to deal with this problem. Alas, I won’t hold my breath on that one.
After the incident at Dundalk Middle ended, the woman with the small children was so angry she contacted the entire county council and other elected officials, including members of the Republican delegation.
Interestingly enough, only one person acknowledged the issue at the legislative update held at the NP Library–Senator Johnny Ray Salling. As the above photo reveals, Salling also paid a visit to the area where the disorderly have been ruling through fear and intimidation.
Here is the police response to the situation:
“I understand that over the past several weeks the communities near Dundalk High and Middle School have had a rash of problems involving students gathering in large numbers and sometimes getting into fights. This isn’t something that is new and sometimes this problem comes up from time to time. Over the years we have used different strategies to help solve this problem and they may need to be implemented again. We are working with school administrations and collectively with the School Resource Officers to come to a remedy. Hopefully can put this to rest without too many issues.
I know Gloria Nelson has been working with local Clergy to come together and talk with the kids and I appreciate her help in this matter.”
One more issue involves Councilman (I have no clue) Todd (noddy) Crandell, who spoke to his first announced challenger, Brian Weir.
Mr. Weir advised me that Councilman Crandell said he was unaware of any problems dealing with the above incident. Candidate Weir also said that he spoke to Councilman Crandell at 3 pm.
I can verify that Mr. Crandell was fully aware of this issue following a phone call I made to his office asking for a comment. And, just to be sure, I sent the following email to get something on the record:
Councilman Todd Crandell
Towson MD, 21204
Regarding my call to your office, in order for clarity, would you like to issue a statement on the racial violence that is occurring around the Dundalk Middle School and how you plan to address this problem.
I will be posting an article on this matter by the end of the working day.
As always, I received no reply from anyone at Mr. Crandell’s office and here is the biggest joke of all in this reply from his office:
“Thank you for contacting the office of Councilman Todd Crandell. Our staff will respond to your inquiry promptly.”
So the facts are the facts, which means someone was either not telling the truth or was just completely out of touch with what is happening in the area.
Candidate Weir also provided the following message from Mr. Crandell’s office:
I know the quality is not that good, but the Post is censured from seeing any of Mr. Crandell’s posts. I will deal with that issue shortly.
Basically, the above message focuses on beer drinking rather that important issues that the councilman continues to avoid, such as violence in our streets.
At least one person is brave enough to take on the challenge of removing Mr. Crandell from office.
Note: Coming soon in the Baltimore Post, is an exclusive investigation into the problems regarding the rise of violent crime in Baltimore City and the broken spirits of the thin blue line.