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In the Media: Protests as Davis Named Police Commissioner; Medical Marijuana Plans for Baltimore

Protestors following Davis's confirmation as Baltimore's Police Commissioner.
Protestors following Davis's confirmation as Baltimore's Police Commissioner.

A digest of Baltimore news from local sources.

From The AFRO American: Protestors Take to the Streets After Davis is Confirmed as Balto’s Police Commissioner

"Protesters took to the streets on Oct. 19 after members of the Baltimore City Council voted to confirm Police Chief Kevin Davis as the head of the city’s police department.

"Davis won the vote 12-2 with City Councilman Carl Stokes, who is running for mayor, and Councilman Nick J. Mosby, who is rumored to be considering a run, voting no. Davis was a former deputy under Anthony W. Batts who was fired from the position earlier this year. 

“'We need stability in the Police Department,' said Brandon Scott, city councilman, during the hearing. 'We cannot have a temporary captain of the ship with all the violence in the city and the [Freddie Gray] trials coming up. … I have confidence that the commissioner will do a better job of working with everyone to get the crime rate down.'

"Following protests last week, Bernard C. “Jack” Young, council president ordered the balcony overlooking the chamber closed citing safety concerns. Many of the people who had come to witness the proceedings were unable to get in. About 20 minutes into the meeting, many protesters spilled out of the meeting, chanting things like 'No justice, no peace, no racist police!' 

"The group of about 40, marched from City Hall to the Inner Harbor – often walking directly in the streets and stopping traffic. They stopped at McKeldin Square and eventually headed back to City Hall, where police had set up barricades. 

"Organizers told the group to follow police orders and avoid getting arrested. The group had dispersed by around 6:30 p.m. 

"Activist Kwame Rose said that Davis went back on his word after a meeting that was held Oct. 18 involving several activists and Davis. 

“'Last night the Commissioner met with four young activists including myself and he agreed to the 19 rules of engagement. We went and we reworked every word of those 19 rules of engagement and even added a 20th rule of engagement which was that Baltimore City Police would designate one community liaison from the police department to coordinate with the protesters so that our First Amendment rights would be respected.'

“'Today he had until 12 p.m. to adhere to that and make a public statement and we agreed. We left that meeting with an agreement that that would happen and that did not happen. The Commissioner has continued to show that he is not interested in the respect of black young people in this city who care about their lives and their first amendment rights.'"

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From The Baltimore Sun: Entrepreneurs Announce Plans to Apply to Open a Medical Marijuana Growing Facility in Baltimore

"Two Silver Spring-based entrepreneurs said Monday they hope to open a medical marijuana growing and processing plant in Baltimore.

"Healthy Choice Alternative LLC is in the process of applying for one of up to 15 cultivation licenses as well as a processors license from the state under Maryland's medical marijuana program, an attorney for the company said.

"Plans call for renovating a vacant 118,000-square-foot building into a growing operation, starting in about 30,000 square feet and expanding to about 100,000 square feet, said attorney Eddie Pounds. He said the company is not disclosing the specific site, which would be in an area zoned for industrial or manufacturing use within the 11th councilmanic district, which runs from Federal Hill through downtown and Mount Vernon north to Reservoir Hill and west to Harlem Park.

"'The idea is to combine the growing and processing operations at the same site,' Pounds said.

"The company said it has been meeting with city officials about the proposal. The operation would bring in at least 100 jobs over three years, starting with about 20, including growers, trimmers, packagers, security guards, human resources managers and accountants, the company said."

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From The Baltimore Sun: Baltimore Museum of Art Receives $3 Million Donation for New Education Center

"The Baltimore Museum of Art announced on Tuesday that it is receiving $3 million -- one of the largest gifts in its history -- from two long-time supporters to pay some costs of its new center for education and creativity.

"The new Patricia and Mark Joseph Education Center, named after the donors, will open Sunday. It will culminate the final phase in the museum's multiyear renovation project. 

"Pat Joseph has been a museum trustee for nine years and spent a decade as a docent. The couple is 'delighted to support this groundbreaking education program,' Mark Joseph, an attorney, real estate developer and former Baltimore city official, said in a news release. 'We have been involved in education in Baltimore for decades, and we firmly believe that the new Joseph Education Center will engage and strengthen our community through imaginative programming and meaningful outreach.'"

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