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Gov. Larry Hogan of Maryland promised an “overwhelming display” of law enforcement in Baltimore on Tuesday to prevent a repeat of the riots a day earlier, when the city was convulsed by looting, fires and clashes between the police and angry crowds.
Speaking to reporters on Tuesday morning, Hogan said that additional police, fire and National Guard officers would be on duty.
“By tonight, you’re going to see an overwhelming display of people out there on the streets protecting the citizens,” he said. “What happened last night is not going to happen again.”
The governor, a Republican, said that he respected the rights of protesters upset over the death of Freddie Gray, who suffered a spinal cord injury in police custody.
He also said that he still wants answers about how Gray was treated. But he said that the riots on Monday, in which at least 15 police officers were injured, were another matter entirely.
“This is about lawlessness and violence in the streets of Baltimore, which is not going to be tolerated,” he said.
Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake, who on Monday referred to the rioters as “thugs” bent on destroying the city, sidestepped an opportunity to second-guess the police response.
“It’s a very delicate balancing act when we have to make sure that we’re managing but not increasing and escalating the problem,” she told reporters. “There’s always going to be armchair quarterbacks that have never sat in my seat that see things differently. But this isn’t the first emergency that I’ve had to deal with, and I know that you have to put in the work and manage the crisis on the ground, and that’s what we’re doing.”