18 shootings stem largely from drug feud, police say
By Justin Fenton and Scott Calvert
Police believe a long-running dispute between drug organizations contributed to an unprecedented eruption of violence on Baltimore's east side Sunday night that left at least 18 people shot, including two who died.
Twelve of the victims were struck at a backyard cookout that left a pregnant woman and a 2-year-old child injured, an incident that police say prompted a running gun battle between two vehicles three hours later.
Mayor Sheila Dixon called the shootings a "cowardly act" and implored the community to come forward with tips, as police directed dozens of additional officers into the eastern and southeastern districts.
"It's important from my perspective that people come forth - if not, they're going to see this happen even more, because whatever is happening is not going to stop," Dixon said at a news conference at City Hall.