It is 2:25 in the afternoon as EMTs struggle to help the writhing man, facedown in the dirt on the sidewalk.
They strap him onto a stretcher. His head lolls, his T-shirt rides up exposing his belly and white foam crusts around his mouth. It is hardly a rare occurrence, according to one bystander.
‘This is a high drugs run,’ he explains, gesturing up and down W North Avenue, ‘They OD and fall out all the time.’
Within the next three hours and as many blocks there will be three shootings in this pocket of West Baltimore alone.
It is home to some of the most dangerous housing projects in the country, where homicide is an epidemic; drugs are on every corner and rats root around in the mounds of trash strewn in side alleys.
Buildings lie derelict, demolished and uncleared. Drug dealers fan their cash and addicts trip in broad daylight.
Last weekend President Trump prompted outrage when he kicked back at Congressman Elijah Cummings criticism of conditions in border camps by describing his district as a, ‘disgusting, rat and rodent infested mess.’
Today, the president mocked the ‘really bad news’ that the congressman’s Baltimore apartment had been robbed.
According to the President, District 7 is ‘FAR WORSE and more dangerous,’ than the nation’s southern border.
‘No human being would want to live there,’ he tweeted, demanding to know where the $16billion of Federal funding given to the city had gone.
It’s a good question – with few answers.
The truth is that the city itself cannot account for the millions of dollars in grants that have poured into its coffers, according to Baltimore’s most recent audit analyzed by DailyMail.com.
According to the 2018 city audit, millions of the dollars supposedly invested here are unaccounted for.
The audit notes numerous ‘significant deficiencies’ and ‘material weaknesses’ across almost every department and found a consistent lack of any internal tracking of funds.
The accounting for some departments was found to be so lacking that the sum of questioned funds is simply labeled ‘Unknown.’
City Auditor Audrey Askew resigned from her post in February of this year amid rumors that she had been pressured to ‘write off’ sums of money that were otherwise unaccounted for.
Speaking at the time an unnamed colleague described Askew as ‘honest’ and unwilling to bow to such pressure.
Baltimore’s then Mayor Catherine Pugh resigned three months later amid a growing scandal that involved hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of children’s books that she wrote and were bought by the University of Maryland Medical System while she was a member of the board.
And 2018 isn’t the first year of such mismanagement.
In 2014, for example, a finance department study found that $40million in grant money made from state, federal and other sources was unaccounted for.
The Department of Housing and Urban Development ordered the city to repay $3.7 million from a grant awarded to serve homeless people. The city claimed to have dispersed the money to anti-poverty organizations that didn’t properly document how it was spent.
According to a recent report from the Urban Institute Baltimore still suffers the legacy of what once was an overtly racist – and legally segregated – housing policy that prohibited homeowners in white areas from selling to blacks.
The report highlighted a ‘longstanding and stark segregation in how investment is distributed within the city.’
Lawrence Brown, an associate professor in Morgan State University’s School of Community Health and Policy, described the segregated wings of East and West Baltimore as, ‘the black butterfly.’
Go a handful of blocks back from Baltimore’s upscale Inner Harbor and a disturbing reality, as witnessed this week by DailyMail.com and confirmed by some of its residents.
Click here to read more.
Source: Daily Mail