DC mayor, attorney general trade blame amid spike in juvenile violence

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Blame Game, Round Two!

Government officials in Washington, DC, exchange criticism and point fingers after a rapid escalation of juvenile crime has drawn criticism for the government’s inability to control the city.

“Where does a 13-year-old get a firearm from? Where do two 15-year-olds get firearms? But they go so far as to use them in broad daylight… This is unacceptable, and we have to make it happen,” said Robert. Conte, the metropolitan police chief, on the sharp rise in youth violence, according to Fox 5: Make sure there is an accountability mechanism to ensure that doesn’t happen.

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“It’s not that no arrests were made,” Conte told reporters. “Where do we need to make adjustments in the system?

Mayor Muriel Bowser and Metropolitan Police Chief Robert County, November 29, 2021.

Mayor Muriel Bowser and Metropolitan Police Chief Robert County, November 29, 2021.
(Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images)

“We have to look at the case beyond the point of arrest and see what really happens. And what does this measure of accountability look like?”

D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser spoke with similar questions, pointing to the city’s court system as a potential weak link.

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“If he gets sued, he goes to court. The court can say, ‘No, that’s not for us.'” You, we’re going to transfer to this other agency. “It could happen,” Bowser assumed.

Mayor Muriel Bowser

Mayor Muriel Bowser
(Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images)

House Oversight Committee Republicans He previously sent a letter to Bowser regarding the increase in violent crime sweeping the nation’s capital.

House Oversight Committee Member James Comer, a Republican from Kentucky, led the Republican committee in a letter criticizing Bowser for allowing the city to deteriorate to a point that is “reminiscent of the ’90s.”

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“And you know that juvenile crimes are prosecuted locally,” Boozer replied. “The district attorney is prosecuting them. So what happened? These are questions we must ask.”

Washington District Attorney Carl Racine criticized a series of messages on social media on Saturday in which he addressed questions about the city’s allegedly bland policies toward juvenile crime.

“Leadership is not about assigning blame. It’s about working together to reduce crime and increase public safety,” Racine said of the controversy. “My office prosecutes all juvenile violent crimes when we have strong evidence, where the standard of proof leaves no room for doubt, and where arrest is constitutional. Anyone, including a young man, who commits a violent crime must be held accountable.”

Prosecutor Karl Racine on December 14, 2021.

Prosecutor Karl Racine on December 14, 2021.
(Bill Clark/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images)

Racine has distanced himself from anti-arrest and anti-police sentiment, stating that he feels that prosecution does not conflict with community service.

“Accountability does not interfere with our efforts to help them get the services and support they need, so they are less likely to be exposed to criminality again, making our communities safer,” Racine concluded. “To address the increase in violence, Washington, D.C. needs clear, consistent, and comprehensive leadership and response.”

Last year, DC’s city council voted to cut Bowser’s $11 million funding proposal to hire more officers to $5 million and spend $6 million on anti-violence safety programs

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Washington, DC, experienced 198 murders In 2020, an increase of 19% over 2019, the data of the Metropolitan Police Department shows. In 2021, the number of homicides rose to 226 – the largest number of homicides in the capital since 2003.

While rivalries between gangs or crews may lead to murder, underlying disagreements often stem from petty insults, criminologists and local officials told Fox News. This can often stem from disagreements over drugs, money, or women, or sometimes from one rapper in one crew criticizing the other.

“These struggles can happen … for surprisingly small things,” Thomas Abt, a senior fellow at the Criminal Justice Council, told Fox News. “Insult on social media, dispute over girlfriend etc.”

These types of incidents “have been around for a long time and cause the most murders in the United States,” Abt said, but they “really took off in 2020 and into 2021.”

Fox News’ Ethan Barton and Houston Kane contributed to this report.

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