BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Gov. Larry Hogan announced Wednesday two new initiatives designed to reduce violent crime in Baltimore.

During a visit to west Baltimore Wednesday evening, Hogan said he directed Attorney General Brian Frosh to start prosecuting more violent crime cases, including those involving guns and organized crime. He also outlined the initiatives in a letter to Frosh.

“Today, I signed a letter to directing Attorney General Frosh to begin prosecuting violent crimes in Baltimore City,” Hogan said. “I gave him that power back in 2015. Since 2015, they’ve prosecuted in the criminal division of the Attorney’s General Office 200 crimes. We’re going to ask them to step that up significantly.”

The governor also wants state police to dramatically increase the execution of high-priority warrants for violent offenders starting immediately.

“I’ve also directed, effective immediately, the Maryland State Police to ramp up a very aggressive activity of the process of serving warrants on the most violent criminals in Baltimore City,” Hogan said. “This is a permanent, ongoing effort.”

Hogan noted that there are currently 60,000 outstanding warrants in Baltimore City.

“We’re not going to handle all of them, but we’re going to handle the violent ones.”

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The announcement comes a little more than a week after Hogan pledged an additional $21 million to Baltimore to fight violent crime, provided the city submits quarterly progress reports.

“We’ve already started aerial patrols of the city,” Hogan said. “We have at least 10 helicopters, which are already flying over the city and reporting on criminal activities that are taking place.”

Hogan added he feels as though the city is “trying its best.”

Baltimore State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby responded back late Wednesday night.

“Out of my office, it’s not tit for tat,” she said. “But year to date, we have a 92 percent felony conviction rate. I look forward to sitting down with the governor and talking about real solutions.”

Read Hogan’s Wednesday letter to Frosh here.

Rick Ritter

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