A few flying bottles make a case


Another article Wednesday should have stated that an incident in which bottles and batteries were thrown at Councilmen Lawrence A. Bell III and Martin O'Malley occurred at the intersection of Park Heights and Belvedere avenues.

The Sun regrets the error.

Baltimore City Councilmen Lawrence A. Bell III and Martin O'Malley made a late-night tour of Park Heights Avenue yesterday in an effort to document the need for a curfew.

They got a graphic demonstration of the kind of thing that convinces them one is needed when a group of youths threw batteries and soda bottles at them.

As the two councilmen paused at Park Heights and Woodland avenues for an interview, a group of about 15 youths threw batteries and soda bottles at them and at reporters. Mr. O'Malley and Mr. Bell took refuge in a television truck, which then immediately drove away. No one was struck by the projectiles.

"Don't you get depressed seeing this?" Mr. Bell said, slumping in the front seat of the television truck. "I've run out of things to say."

There were no police officers on the tour, and none was called.

Police Commissioner Thomas C. Frazier suspended Baltimore's curfew this week after last week's decision by the Maryland Court of Appeals to strike down a similar law in Frederick as unconstitutional

The City Council will meet in emergency session this week to consider a revised curfew law. Mr. Bell, who chairs the public safety committee, will hold public hearings tonight and tomorrow night.

Mr. O'Malley and Mr. Bell said the tour's goal was to get ample evidence to prove the necessity of the curfew.

They got more than they bargained for.

The tour started at Park Heights Avenue and Cold Spring Lane and proceeded north. It stopped at Woodland Avenue about 11:45 p.m. so that a group of youths, most of whom appeared to be under age 17, could be observed as they congregated on the opposite corner.

When the councilmen moved across the street for a television interview, the youths crossed to the other side, and the projectiles soon started flying.

"To be honest, it's more than I expected," Mr. Bell said. "I didn't think it would be as chaotic as that. It tells me we have a real problem in this city.

"I'd like to invite the police commissioner, the mayor and all the city leaders to come out and see what we just saw. I'm convinced that once they come out and see what we just saw, they'll agree a curfew is imperative."

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