Baltimore’s Police Commissioner shocked local residents and the nation Thursday when he “apologized” for “200 years” of police brutality; sparking a fierce backlash from a region struggling to contain escalating gun violence.
Commissioner Darryl De Sousa addressed the crowd at a sold-out Hip Hop concert this week, asking the audience for just “20 seconds” to beg forgiveness for “all the things that the police have done.”
“I want to take about 20 seconds to apologize for all the things that the police have done dating back 200 years,” said De Sousa.
“Two hundred years ago, all the way to civil rights. All the way to the ’80s where crack was prevalent in the cities and it affected disproportionately African-American men. All the way to the ’90s. All the way to the 2000’s when we had zero tolerance,” he added.
The President of Baltimore’s Police Union slammed the Commissioner’s comments late Thursday night, saying it was not “appropriate.”
“I’m not sure that a blanket apology covering 200 years is appropriate. Law enforcement was created to protect and serve the citizenry despite race and that is what we strive to do, daily,” the union added.