Baltimore police “took a knee” after the death of Freddie Gray, letting arrests plummet while murders skyrocketed, the city’s former top cop says. Anthony Batts was fired as police commissioner in July after 45 people were killed that month alone. On Wednesday, Batts said officers engaged in a purposeful slowdown because they did not feel supported by commanders. “They felt that I wasn’t standing up for them,” he said. “Is this going to be the tactic, where police don’t feel supported, so they allow the crime rate to go up, and the reformers lose their job?” Batts asked, referring to himself. Police officials did not respond to the comments. Baltimore has logged 225 homicides so far this year, a number not seen since the 1970s.
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