Baltimore Police Department officials on Monday, say they received a credible threat that rival gangs have joined forces in attempts to take out law enforcement officers. Department spokesman announced that the Criminal Intelligence Unit obtained intelligence indicating members of various gangs including the Bloods, Crips and the Black Guerilla Family have entered into a mutual partnership aimed at taking out law enforcement officials.
Captain Eric Kowalczyk could not further elaborate on how the information was collected or why the Baltimore Police Department found it reliable. He would not comment on whether it was possibly connected to the ongoing demonstrations regarding the death of Freddie Gray. The alert comes as thousands poured into a local Baltimore church for the funeral of Freddie Gray. Protests were quiet until Saturday’s rally began with more than 1,000 Baltimore residents. Baltimore’s Police Commissioner Anthony Batts weaved his way through the protest, promising the Police Department was making changes. Batts said the protesters became very violent and began throwing things; they picked up aluminum barricades and smashed windows at local bars in the area. Batts said some residents moved between police and the angry crowd, urging the protesters not to damage the city. He applauded the police officers for showing restraint.
“I am proud of our residents and our police officers,” Batts said. “The vast majority of residents out here did a good job. … A small number of people felt like they had to turn this into an ugly day.” The Baltimore FBI office released a memo that the Black Guerilla Family was targeting “white cops” in Maryland. The memo reported that a reliable contact said members of the gang connected to the high-profile corruption scandal at the Baltimore City Detention Center — were planning to target white officers to “send a message.” Baltimore Police Commissioner Anthony W. Batts targeted the Black Guerilla family early in his tenure. The crew, with roots on the West Coast, also was implicated in the recent scandal at the Baltimore jail where detainees and guards were implicated in drug running.
Police went on high-alert after a man brought a gun into a local police station claiming it was a security test ordered by the Black Guerilla Family. The department warned other law enforcement agencies to “take appropriate precautions.” Police released an FBI bulletin after two NYPD officers were killed in their car by a man who was angry over the killing of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri, warning that the BGF was targeting Baltimore police officers.
On April 12, Gray was apprehended by members of the Baltimore Police Department after fleeing on foot from a cluster of officers. He suffered a severe injury to his spinal cord while in the custody of the BPD and died a week later. Six police officers remain suspended pending the results of an internal investigation into the affair. Protests erupted across Baltimore after Gray’s arrest and intensified following his death. Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake and the family of Freddie Gray have urged protesters to remain peaceful, but police reportedly arrested dozens over the weekend when rallies turned violent. Local Baltimore residents, observers and activists have grown suspicious of this announcement by the Baltimore Police Department, saying the timing of its release was too convenient. One Baltimore native on twitter saying it was “vile” to release during the funeral.