Baltimore went 12 days without a homicide this month.
The streak, which came to an end Tuesday afternoon with a fatal shooting in East Baltimore, is the longest since the 2015 unrest that saw a sharp and sustained spike in violence. And it coincided with the start of a 72-hour community-led “ceasefire” that kicked off Feb. 2.
“I am losing my mind thrilled,” said Baltimore Ceasefire organizer Erricka Bridgeford earlier this week. For days, she said she stayed up until midnight, to see if the city has made it through another day without a killing.
“It’s really exciting,” she said. “Baltimore deserves this boost of love.”
Bridgeford doesn’t give the ceasefire all the credit for the peace — she sees murder as a public health issue, with many causes — but rather it’s brought by “everything that everyone is doing,” she said. “Everything … is paying off.”
Still, she’s cautious: She said her stepson called earlier to say he’d run from bullets in West Baltimore.
“I’m praying that nobody dead,” she said.
The longest streak in Baltimore without a homicide that The Sun could find came in March 2014, when the city went about 17 days without a homicide. That month saw just seven killings, tied for the fewest in a month since 1970.
Since the unrest, the longest period of consecutive days without a homicide was almost eight days from February 28 to March 8 in 2017.
This year started with 11 killings in the first 12 days, followed by more than six days without a homicide. Mayor Catherine E. Pugh fired Commissioner Kevin Davis, citing impatience with violence, and replaced him with Darryl De Sousa. The next 13 days saw 15 killings, followed by the current streak.
Before the 22-year-old man killed Tuesday, the most recent victim this year was Jerrell Brice, a 27-year-old who was fatally shot on Feb. 1 at around 1:20 p.m. in East Baltimore and who police said died two days later. The case is unsolved. Anyone with information should call police at 410-396-2100.
Baltimore Sun reporter Christina Tkacik contributed to this story.