If you believe Maryland Del. Pat McDonough, don’t visit Baltimore’s Inner Harbor because gangs of black teenagers are terrorizing tourists.
"Roving mobs of black youth are responsible for the attacks," said McDonough, a Republican state legislator. "This has been going on for years. I have a responsibility as an elected official to bring this to the public's attention."
And here’s the bombshell accusation that is long on fiction and short on facts: McDonough claims city and state officials are “covering up” crimes committed by black gangs at Inner Harbor. McDonough is calling for Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings to convene a "summit" to address public safety concerns in Inner Harbor — or resign.
Thanks to McDonough, the issue of race in Baltimore is at the forefront of discussion with some black activists saying McDonough is race baiting, while his supporters say black teenagers have been allowed to run wild. The not-so-subtle implication by McDonough is that black teens are frightening white families who are visiting Inner Harbor, downtown Baltimore's flagship tourist spot.
"Del. McDonough's sad and racially-charged publicity stunt is not deserving of a response and Mayor Rawlings-Blake is proud of the men and women of the Baltimore Police Department for reducing crime to historic lows,” Blake spokesman Ryan O'Doherty told reporters. “As an elected official, Del. McDonough should show more respect for the work our police officers do with the community to make Baltimore safer."
McDonough told reporters that he and his wife were recently driving through the Inner Harbor area when they witnessed "a mob of nearly 100 people "battling" in the middle of the street.
“It was a pretty frightening sight," he said. "People, retired police officers, have been calling me telling me this has been going on for a long time and the city and the mayor are covering it up." He said Gov. Martin O'Malley should send in Maryland State Police to patrol the Inner Harbor.
He also said the Inner Harbor area should also be declared a "no travel zone."
"The State Department does it all the time for people traveling to the Middle East and other areas," McDonough said. "People need to be alerted that there's a danger."
Rev. Cortly Witherspoon, a Baltimore minister, said McDonough should apologize for his comments. Witherspoon held a rally at City Hall this week with religious leaders, politicians and civil rights leaders to criticize McDonough.
"He is attempting to galvanize a right-wing conservative base," Witherspoon told reporters. "He is attempting to awaken a very dark side of the electorate in this state."
Civil rights leaders lined up to criticize McDonough.
"Mr. McDonough, you have given us a reason to come together to discuss your bigotry," said Marvin L. "Doc" Cheatham, former head of the city's NAACP chapter. "But more important is our children. They have to be our priority."
City officials said teen violence has been reduced by 37 percent over the previous two years, while also reducing juvenile arrests by 60 percent.
"Baltimore City has reduced crime by a greater percentage than any major city in American in the last 10 years," O'Malley said. "Pat should come and visit some time."
Last year, a black teenager was stabbed during a fight and more than 100 teenagers roamed the Inner Harbor area. And two years ago, business owners complained that 4,000 teenagers were hanging out in Inner Harbor. There were no fights, no arrests, and no rowdy behavior, according to news reports, but some businessmen complained because the crowd was mostly black.
Meanwhile, Del. Keiffer J. Mitchell Jr., a black Baltimore Democrat, said McDonough’s comments were designed to start trouble.
"It's a throwback to the '50s and '60s, and it's obviously race-baiting," Mitchell said.
Mitchell has offered to take McDonough on a tour of the Inner Harbor area but, so far, McDonough has ignored the invitation.
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This Week’s Celebrity Instagrams (10/15-10/21)
31 photos Launch gallery
1. Just a NY girl with BIG dreams....
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2. HAPPY CHILDREN=QUALITY PARENTING. We don't always see eye to eye on everything and that's normal. We're human beings. But we come together and do it right for what's important, the kids. We are not enemies, we are parents. And we are parents 1st. S/O to @monyettashaw for making Mason's bday memorable. S/O to @itscrystalsmith at home taking care of our other lil' Prince. ❤️❤️❤️ THIS IS WHAT CO-PARENTING LOOKS LIKE. #Blessed #Happy #AboveTheDrama #BiggerThanUs
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3. So happy to finally be able to share with you all that I’m the new Global Brand Ambassador for @Revlon! Follow my day on RevlonSnaps. Yay! Choose Love, Everybody! #RevlonXCiara #chooselove #ad
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4. Glam on point!!!@makeupbymotoko & @shaylinjoneshair #easybreezy @lifetimetv #beachesmovie #january2017 😘
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5. ✨True love ✨📸: @jessiemarrerophotography
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7. Today was not easy..but by the grace of God we all got through it. Words cannot express our gratitude for all of your Prayers, Positive thoughts and Support for us throughout the years. Tommy will be missed but most certainly never forgotten...And PLEASE don't ask "Where's Martin?.." he was there too...just not in this picture. Lol! God bless you all.. #LoveConquersAll #MartinShow
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9. West coast get ready for #RockyHorror. I will be live tweeting again. #letsdothetimewarpagain
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10. #THEKEYS pre order yours now ... Available everywhere #NOV22 #WeTheBest 🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑
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11. We about to ROCK at #KCABlackBall!! All for our life-changing effort to end 🌎 AIDS.
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12. Today's #SNAPJACK is brought to you by @yazzthegreatest 😂😂😂💋💋💋
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13. Damn girl you kinda old to be headed to the Go Go. You coming in at the age they leaving. LMAO
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14. Daddy daycare B-Boxin with @acewellstucker @shopraisingace
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15. #FBF Naviyd & URV "LIL MONSTERS"
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16. HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO ONE OF THE BIGGEST LEGENDS IN OUR HIPHOP HISTORY! @snoopdogg CONTINUED BLESSING AND LOVE FAMILY!!!!! REAL OG!
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17. Thank you for a beautiful night VSU! Let's do it again! #HOMECOMING
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18. Had a great time this morning with my familia Erica, Griff & Truth!!
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19. Check out my interview on @essence facebook live. #inmyownwords #nycpromo #day2
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20. #She💋 #tbt #TheCoveAtTheAtlantis #DawgPawsAndAll
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21. Bae #retailtherapy
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22. Why me and @coryhardrict got the same pose... and notee... new mouth #naked
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23. When my husband is my personal 'hype-man'! it kills me every time! 💜😂 #WHATNOW #lostfiles📷
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24. Diggy Simmons
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25. Hand full of @jacquieaiche 💙💎💍 @esnail_la 💅🏾
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26. SuperSoulers! You can watch my interview with Carl Lentz live from my Facebook page, tomorrow at 11a ET| 8a PT. #SuperSoulSunday
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27. 💋 .. When the friendship is easy like Sunday morning. ☀️
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28. Sunday mornings are the best........... hugs and cuddles with my angel
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29. #huggar16 #hellohuggars
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30. My gym is everywhere!.. #RnBMoney #TheGeneral 📸: @twelvepastseven
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31. Nothing I would rather be doing... Rocko setting up our movie, Romelō working on a puzzle & Laiyah singing and sharing all she's learning at school... I'm so grateful for the joy they've brought into my life ... Praying for peace , joy & love in the home of EVERY family ♥️ #HeadScarfPJSunday LOL 😂
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