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January 13, 2010

Jessamy to Annapolis to push gang legislation

Baltimore State's Attorney Patricia C. Jessamy is heading to the General Assembly session to push for tougher gang laws. In the past, legislators have weakened her efforts to tighten laws and penalties to go after witness intimidation cases.

Here is a brief statement from her office, followed by a more detailed list of her legislative priorities:




Baltimore, MD – January 13, 2010 – State’s Attorney Jessamy is scheduled to attend the opening of the Maryland General Assembly’s 2010 Legislative session today.  Of critical importance to Baltimore is to gain support for revising the 2007 gang statute.  Specifically:


            °           Removing complex language from the current gang definition

            °           Establishing a statewide gang member validation criteria

            °           Adding additional gang related offenses to the list of underlying crimes

            °          Making the penalty for a violation of the statute a true enhancement     sentence. 

Posted by Peter Hermann at 10:26 AM | | Comments (1)
Categories: Confronting crime, Gangs, Witness intimidation


If just 10% of the effort (and money) so willingly spent on the symptoms were actually directed at the causes we could move on to other real problems.

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About Peter Hermann
Peter Hermann started covering news for The Baltimore Sun in 1990, first in Anne Arundel County and, starting in 1994, reporting on the Baltimore Police Department. In 2001, he was assigned to Jerusalem as the Baltimore Sun's Middle East correspondent. He returned in 2005 as an assistant city editor overseeing crime coverage. In 2008, Peter returned to the beat as a daily reporter and blogger. A recent BBC report featured him in a segment on the harsh realities of covering crime in Baltimore.

Coverage will focus on crime trends, problems in neighborhoods in the city and elsewhere, profiles of victims and police officers and try to offer readers a fresh perspective on one of the most vexing issues facing Baltimore and its future.

Contributing to this blog is Justin Fenton, who joined The Sun in 2005 and has covered the Baltimore City Police Department and the criminal justice system since 2008. His work includes an investigation into Cal Ripken Jr.’s minor league baseball stadium deal with his hometown of Aberdeen, a three-part series chronicling a ruthless con woman, coverage of the killing of five Amish children at a schoolhouse in Nickel Mines, Pa., and a job swap with a British crime reporter to explore differences in crime-fighting. A special report looking into how city police handle rape cases led to sweeping reforms that changed the way sexual assaults are investigated in Baltimore. He was recognized as the best reporter in Baltimore by the City Paper in 2010 and by Baltimore Magazine in 2011.

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