Standing in front of 293 guns that police seized in April, Baltimore City Mayor Sheila Dixon unveiled a new strategy to curb illegal gun use, including a gun task force, legislation to create a gun offender registry and the creation of Gun Stat to track gun crimes.
"We all know that the most serious criminals in Baltimore use illegal guns to intimidate and harm others," Dixon said.
Baltimore Deputy Police Commissioner Frederick Bealefeld singled out a few of the firearms seized, including a Taurus 9 mm handgun he said was used in three shootings.
"These few weapons speak volumes about what?s occurring and what we?re doing to stop it," Bealefeld said.
Modeled on former Mayor Martin O?Malley?s CitiStat program ? which tracks the efficiency of city services ? GunStat will keep data on gun arrests, cases, bail status, outcomes of cases and sentences, Dixon?s plan states.
Dixon also is seeking legislation for a gun-offender registry, similar to the sex-offender registry, according to the plan.
Her strategy comes as the city?s rate of shootings is spiking. As of April 21, 204 shootings had been reported in Baltimore, compared with 162 at the same time last year.
Additionally, Dixon will call for a new multijurisdictional gun task force and "hit list" of known problem gun dealers.
"These guns aren?t manufactured in Baltimore. They aren?t all sold in Baltimore," Bealefeld said. "This is a problem that affects the entire state. We all share in this plight."
Dixon also will ask for better performance from police and courts. She will call for an end to "bundled pleas and suspended sentences in gun cases" and order all officers to appear at trial for gun-related court cases.