Sunday, June 28, 2015

Federal Documents Debunk Baltimore ‘Gang Threat’ Narrative

Self-described “FOIA terrorist” Jason Leopold of Vice (6/24/15) has released devastating documents about the Department of Homeland Security and the FBI’s analysis of a “threat” released by Baltimore police to media on April 27. The police had claimed that local “gangs” had gotten together and conspired to “take out cops”; this “credible threat,” used to justify an aggressive crackdown on protests against police violence, was reported on at the time from everyone from local news to national outlets like CBS News (4/27/15):
As the funeral for Freddie Gray, the man who suffered a fatal spinal injury in police custody, was held Monday, the Baltimore Police Department announced they had received information about a “credible threat” against the lives of its officers.

In a press release, the department states that “members of various gangs including the Black Guerilla Family, Bloods, and Crips have entered into a partnership to ‘take out’ law enforcement officers.” The statement advises local agencies to “take appropriate precautions to ensure the safety of their officers.”
It turns out, however, that an FBI review in the following days would determine this threat was entirely without merit.


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