This follows a homcide, stabbings and a fight.
Frederick citizens are expressing concerns about crime following several recent events in the city. They're worried about crime in or near the downtown following the fatal shooting of Lamont Ellis, 36 of Urbana, who was found shot multiple times in Mullinex Alley early Sunday morning. Another offense occurred on Monday afternoon, when several individuals got into a fight along West All Saints Street, which involved shots fired and one person taken to Shock Trauma in Baltimore with stab wounds. He has been released. Last Thursday morning, a man in his 40's was stabbed near McCurdy Field.
"While I don't discount this and I don't want to make this sound unimportant, anything that happens like this is extremely important and we need to find out what happened, and find out if there's anything that could have been done to prevent it," says Frederick Mayor Randy McClement, who spoke Tuesday during the "Morning News Express with Bob Miller" on WFMD.
He also says a lot of these crimes are "cyclical," that is they do happen, but not very often.
Despite these recent headlines, Police Chief Kim Dine says he looks at the crime data on a periodic basis, and he says Frederick is safe, but acknowledges that most crime victims may not think so. "Data, charts and statistics frankly don't mean a darn thing when somebody is getting shot at, or literally somebody's getting killed. That's totally unacceptable."
Even though these latest incidents occurred in the downtown, the Chief says that area is safe. "Anything like that can bring fear into the community because it's just not acceptable. But, yes, you see people downtown pretty much all the time, day or night," he says.
Chief Dine says his officers will continue to aggressively go after and lock up people who cause trouble in the community.
Mayor McClement urges residents not to jump to conclusions when crimes like these occur. "The one thing I would like to express is let the police do their full investigation," he says.
Concerns have been brought up that a lot of these crimes could be gang-related. Chief Dine acknowledges that. "There are definitely gangs in Frederick, in Frederick County, in the Baltimore-Washington region. Absolutely," he says. "Which is one reason why we've been so aggressive about getting that word out about gangs."
Another question addressed to Mayor McClement during Tuesday's "Morning News Express With Bob Miller" is whether more police officers on the street would have made a different. "If we had 400 police officers on the street, would that have stopped it? I don't know," he responded. "It's easy to say more people would have stopped the violence. I don't believe that would happen."
The Mayor says the city has to operate under budget constraints, like a lot of other jurisdictions. "I believe it's a huge city and we can't be everywhere. Would it be nice to have more? Yes. Would it be nice if we had more revenues to do all the other things we want to do? Yes."