By Rick Ritter

WASHINGTON (WJZ) — Police chiefs from across the nation are meeting to discuss the national spike in violence.

Rick Ritter explains it’s not just Baltimore dealing with a dramatic spike in bloodshed.

Police chiefs from around the country met in Washington, D.C., as they continue to grapple with an uptick in homicides.

Crime scene tape and evidence markers scattered–a violent theme throughout the streets of Charm City.

One that’s responsible for close to 90 homicides alone in the months of May and July–numbers that haven’t erupted in just Baltimore.

“What we’re dealing with here is bigger than just any one city,” said Chief Tom Manger, Montgomery County Police Department.

Washington, D.C. is up more than 20 percent in murders, Chicago is nearly the same and New Orleans is up over 60 percent–a spike law enforcement is desperate to tackle.

“It is a huge, huge issue. We have not seen what we’re seeing right now in decades,” said Chief Cathy Lanier, Metropolitan Police Department.

In the nation’s capital Monday, the Major Chiefs Association met face to face, discussing striking similarities among some of the most deadly streets across the U.S.

“The single most important commonality we had are repeat offenders,” said Chicago Police Chief Gary McCarthy.

The group is hoping to come up with useful and fresh solutions. From Baltimore to Dallas, most are attributing the uptick to synthetic drugs and repeat offenders.

“We support letting low level offenders, nonviolent offenders out. That’s OK. But at the same time, we’ve got to make sure we’re not just giving away the whole farm, that we’re getting stiffer sentencing for the people who deserve it,” said McCarthy.

Murders and shootings that continue to pile up–with no end in sight.

In addition, New York City, St. Louis and Milwaukee have all seen an uptick in homicides as well. Milwaukee is up more than 100 percent from this time last year.

Forty-five homicides in July was Baltimore’s highest total in more than 40 years.

Rick Ritter


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