Police in Baltimore recently confirmed the city's 300th homicide, making it the fifth consecutive year Baltimore has reached that milestone. The recent murder of a beloved youth sports coach has prompted criticism of the city's leadership. When asked for comment, Baltimore Mayor Bernard Young denied his leadership had anything to do with the problem, saying "I'm not committing the murders."
Jordan Taylor, a 31-year-old coach, was killed during a home invasion last week. Taylor's colleague, John Hoey, wrote on opinion piece criticizing the city's leaders for failing to tackle the city's high crime rates.
"Other cities have successfully reduced their violent crime rate significantly, but in Baltimore we have had not just a crisis of confidence but, in my view, a crisis of leadership," Hoey writes.
FOX 45 News asked Mayor Young about Hoey's criticism regarding his leadership.
"I would beg to differ," Mayor Young argued. "There's not any lack of leadership on my part. I've been moving the city forward, and...[Hoey] never called me. Because, I'm not committing the murders. And that's what people need to understand. I'm not committing the murders. The police commissioner has not committed it. The council's not committing it. So how can you fault leadership?"
As long as the mayor isn't personally killing anyone, he doesn't see how his leadership has anything to do with the city's continuing high crime rate. Mayor Young has been a leader in Baltimore for more than two decades now. Before becoming mayor earlier this year, Young was the president of the Baltimore City Council for nearly 10 years. Prior to that, Young served as a councilman for 14 years.
"I have a great deal of respect for many of our hardworking elected officials," Hoey writes in his opinion piece. "Rather, this is a plea to those in elected office, and those who seek to be, to acknowledge the crisis we are in and to focus on it like your hair's on fire, because our city is, essentially on fire."