Acts of violence and destruction won’t be tolerated in Baltimore

Demonstrators jump on a damaged Baltimore police department vehicle during clashes in Baltimore, Maryland April 27, 2015.(Reuters / Shannon Stapleton)

Demonstrators jump on a damaged Baltimore police department vehicle during clashes in Baltimore, Maryland April 27, 2015.(Reuters / Shannon Stapleton)

Acts of violence and destruction will not be tolerated in Baltimore City, Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan said as he announced a state of emergency after riots broke out in the wake of Freddie Gray’s death in police custody.

LIVE UPDATES: Baltimore riot: Police vs

Hogan said the riot “put innocent Marylanders at
significant risk”
and that the deployment of the National
Guard is a “last resort” to restore order to the

READ MORE: Massive blaze destroys building in
Baltimore following day of riots (PHOTOS, VIDEO)

“People have the right to protest and express their
frustrations, but Baltimore city families deserve peace and
safety in their communities,”
he added. Destructive acts cannot and will not
be tolerated.”

At the press conference, Maj. Gen. Linda L. Singh said
National Guard troops will carry arms while on patrol, but only
for self-defense.

Earlier in the day, Hogan declared a state of emergency and
activated the National Guard to help handle the unrest in
Baltimore. The situation escalated dramatically on Monday after a
group of school-age kids gathered at Mondawmin Malland began
throwing rocks at law enforcement. Officers responded with mace
and pepper spray, but the young people involved then moved to set
at least two vehicles on fire, as well as a local pharmacy.

Fifteen police officers
were injured, a police spokesman told Reuters.

Prior to the governor’s statement, Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake
declared a curfew will be implemented beginning Tuesday night and
will last for one week. All adults and minors, outside of
emergency situations, will need to be off the streets from 10pm
to 5 am.

She also called the
rioters “thugs” several times and said it was
“idotic” to think that destroying the city would lead to
improvements in anyone’s life.

Too many people have spent generations building up this city
for it to be destroyed by thugs,”
she said.

READ MORE: Baltimore riot: Violent clashes, tear
gas, rubber bullets after Freddie Gray funeral

Rawlings-Blake also differentiated between those destroying
property and causing injury from those who took to the streets
without violence last week.

It is very clear there is a difference between what we saw
over the past week with the peaceful protests… and the thugs who
only want to incite violence and destroy our city,”

Tensions between law enforcement and the community have risen
since the death of 25-year-old Freddie Gray, who was arrested
earlier this month after running away from police. He suffered a
severe spine injury while in police custody and slipped into a
coma upon being hospitalized. Gray died one week later.

Local police have acknowledged that officers should have sought
medical attention for Gray at the point of apprehension and that
they failed to offer timely assistance multiple times. They also
did not secure him with a seatbelt in the police wagon, which is
against department policy.

Both local and federal law enforcement are investigating the

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