WASHINGTON (WJZ) — President Obama comments on Baltimore’s state of emergency, saying there’s no excuse for the kind of violence we saw Monday.
Pat Warren with more of the president’s comments.READ MORE: Security Camera Video Shows Chaotic Scene, Quick Police Response After West Baltimore Mass Shooting
The president offered condolences to the family of Freddie Gray and well wishes to the officers injured in Monday’s violence, then he got to the state of emergency.
President Obama made his feelings clear.
“When individuals get crowbars and start prying open doors to loot, they’re not protesting, they’re not making a statement, they’re stealing. When they burn down a building, they’re committing arson and they’re destroying and undermining businesses and opportunities in their own communities that rob jobs and opportunity from people in that area. So it is entirely appropriate that mayor of Baltimore, who I spoke to yesterday, and the governor, who I spoke to yesterday, work to stop that senseless destruction,” President Obama said.
He called Monday’s violence a distraction from the multiple days of peaceful protests.READ MORE: Leaders Call Fells Point Violence 'Tragic & Unacceptable,' Police Urging People To Speak Up
“The overwhelming majority of the community in Baltimore have handled this appropriately, expressing real concern and outrage over the possibility that our laws were not applied evenly in the case of Mr. Gray,” the president said.
“There are problems and challenges when it comes to how policing and our laws are applied in certain communities and we have to pay attention to it and respond,” President Obama continued.
The president says his task force has come up with proposals that if adopted by local communities would make a difference.
President Obama also says we can’t just leave this to the police, that impoverished communities stripped of opportunity need national attention to lift them up.MORE NEWS: Maryland Offices, Schools Announce Closures Friday In Observance Of Juneteenth
The president’s comments came during a rose garden news conference Tuesday morning.