Baltimore residents, plagued by high crime and high tax rates, are used to seeing red. But on Tuesday they will begin to see some blue.
That's when the Police Department will put 50 additional uniformed officers on the street in areas determined by computer analysis to have a need for such old-time policing, the department announced yesterday.
Said spokesman Dennis S. Hill, "We realize in the summertime it stays light longer and more things are going on. We have isolated the problem areas and want to beef up foot patrols in those areas that need it. This is a fairly substantial contribution of people."
Mr. Hill said the 50 officers will augment the 111 existing foot posts in the city.
The new assignments were made independently of a recently announced plan by the Police Department to become more "community oriented," he said.
Mr. Hill added, however, that "this [more emphasis on foot patrols] is one of the things that it [the broader plan] will involve."
The foot posts will be placed in each of the nine city police districts -- in both residential and commercial areas -- where "crime trends and patterns are prevalent," according to police officials.
Although none of the 50 officers will be using patrol cars, some may have Cushman scooters available to them, the officials said.
Some of the city areas targeted for more foot patrols -- identified by police as especially plagued by drugs, street robberies, larcenies and auto thefts -- include Howard Street downtown, the Lexington Market and Mall, the Inner Harbor, parts of Madison and Hoffman streets and Patterson Park in East Baltimore.
Parts of North Avenue, Maryland Avenue, 23rd Street, Calvert Street, Pratt Street, Lombard Street, Martin Luther King Boulevard and Reisterstown Road also are included.
Police Department officials said that the summer program would be re-evaluated from week to week and that the locations and hours of the foot posts would be subject to change.