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Baltimore Murder Count Hits 43-Year High

43 people killed in city in May, 116 so far in 2015
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Jun 1, 2015 9:44 AM CDT
Baltimore Murder Count Hits 43-Year High
In this May 24, 2015, file photo, police pick up a pair of shoes after a double shooting in Baltimore.   (Colin Campbell/The Baltimore Sun via AP, File)

(Newser) – Three fatal shootings in Baltimore yesterday bring May's homicide count to 43, making it the most violent month in more than 40 years. Police say two men were fatally shot in the head about 1am; about 11am, a man was fatally shot in the back. May is the deadliest month in the city since the early 1970s, when 44 people were killed in December 1971 and 45 people in August 1972, according to the Baltimore Sun. There have been 116 homicides in Baltimore in 2015. By this time last year, homicides hadn't hit triple digits.

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Killings, particularly of African-Americans, have to stop, Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake tells the Sun, noting 189 of the 208 people killed last year were black men. "We have to do better," she says. "We have to want more." As homicides rose in May, the number of arrests plummeted. Some attribute the drop to increased scrutiny of police following the April death of Freddie Gray from injuries received in police custody. (Read more Baltimore stories.)

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