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Five children shot in Baltimore last week



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Five Baltimore children under the age of 17 have been shot over the past week, the Baltimore Sun has reported.

A 10-year-old girl, a 12-year-old boy, a 15-year-old boy and two 17-year-old boys are among the city’s latest gun violence victims and Mayor Brandon Scott is vowing to hold city agencies accountable for providing better resources for Baltimore’s youth.

In a statement last week, Mayor Scott said he was “deeply frustrated by the amount of young people who have been victims of violence in our city, especially in recent days.”

“We cannot accept this,” Scott said at a news conference Friday. “We have to understand that these are children, no matter what was said or what was done. They’re children, and children have to be treated differently than adults, especially when you’re taking about the life or shooting or harming a young person.”

“We have seen a 10-year-old shot in the chest, a 12-year-old shot in the arm, and a 17-year-old shot in a public intersection,” Scott continued. “There is nothing harder than talking to a parent whose child has become a victim of violence.”

Scott is also calling a meeting with Baltimore police leadership “to identify special initiatives targeted at quelling the increase in shootings we have recently seen.”

Fourth grader Kaelin Washington is suffering a punctured lung, fractured rib and emotional trauma after walking to the store last weekend to buy a bag of chips.

“I don’t care what your silly, stupid little beef is. That 10-year-old baby had nothing to do with your beef,” Mayor Scott told news reporters.

A 15-year-old boy was pronounced dead at a local hospital last week after an argument escalated into gunshots.

“Imagine what the world would been like for my family if that had happened to me when I was 15 years old. And it could happen to anyone,” Scott said.

Police Commissioner Michael Harrison said at Friday’s news conference that the department is “working aggressively to identify who is responsible and bring them to justice for these senseless acts of violence. Detectives continue to follow investigative leads, some of them very promising.”

“All these incidents speak to the perpetuating culture of violence in our city to include the easy access of guns by criminal and their desire and willingness to use these guns to solve conflict,” he said.

City Council President Nick J. Mosby said the coronavirus pandemic is putting many children in harm’s way, since it has been keeping children and teens out of the classroom.

“This pandemic has displaced our children from the safety of their classrooms, it has upended their routines and stability, exacerbated behavioral health challenges and created even more economic distress for many families,” Mosby said in a statement Friday. “Layering that on top of Baltimore’s longstanding challenges means too many of our young people are in harm’s way and often in dangerous situations.”

Mayor Scott released a plan last month to increase safety within neighborhoods and expand opportunities for youth.

Scott wants to arrest the most violent offenders in the city and focus on the trauma that drives young men to choose gun violence.

Scott will focus on giving more resources to the housing, health, employment and addiction departments.

Scott’s plan will incorporate the Police Department into his public health strategy. Before the new plan, law enforcement agencies and public health departments worked separately and were often at odds. Scott is forcing the two sides to talk with each other. He is also resurrecting the Strategic Decision Support Centers, where cops, prosecutors, and state prosecutors work together to reduce violence.

Follow Annaliese Levy on Twitter @AnnalieseLevy

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National Security

ISIS-Inspired Teen’s Sinister Plot Foiled: Lone Wolf Threat Neutralized in Las Vegas



ISIS operatives

A horrifying report was unearthed that a 16-year-old aspiring terrorist had sinister plans to unleash “lone wolf operations in Las Vegas” in the name of ISIS, according to law enforcement sources.

Fox News reports the ominous announcement came via a social media post where the suspect vowed to embark on a campaign against what he deemed “the enemies of Allah.” The disturbing message included an ISIS flag and expressions in Arabic, underscoring the gravity of the threat.

Law enforcement swiftly swung into action after the Nov. 28 post, which was laden with a call for “Dua for victory” and a declaration of allegiance to the Islamic State. Within a matter of hours, the FBI Joint Terrorism Task Force, in collaboration with the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department counter-terrorism division, pinpointed the suspect’s identity and location.

A subsequent raid led to the teenager’s arrest on Friday. Disturbingly, agents uncovered not just his support for ISIS, evident through a handmade flag and propaganda, but also a cache of materials indicating a tangible terror plot.

Furthermore, the seized items included components for constructing improvised explosive devices, bomb-making instructions, and self-portraits of the suspect surrounded by ISIS paraphernalia.

Deputy Chief of Homeland Security and Special Operations Division, Dori Koren, emphasized that law enforcement believes this to be an isolated threat that was promptly neutralized. There are currently no indications of additional threats to the community.

The minor is facing charges of terroristic threats, attempting to further an act of terrorism, providing material support to a terrorist organization, and possession of explosive components — all of which are felony charges. The prosecution will be spearheaded by the Clark County District Attorney’s Office in Nevada.

This alarming incident underscores the ever-present challenge of combating radicalization, even among the youth, and the critical role law enforcement plays in thwarting potential acts of terror on U.S. soil.

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