BALTIMORE, MD - APRIL 30: Baltimore Police Commissioner Anthony Batts speaks at a press conference regarding the death of Freddie Gray on April 30, 2015 in Baltimore, Maryland. It was announced that the van carrying Gray had stopped a second, previously undisclosed, time. Baltimore has seen days of rioting since Gray's death while in police custody.

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Batts urged police departments across the country to do their part in repairing relationships with communities

Taylor Lewis
May, 06, 2015

Determined to rebuild the broken relationship between the Baltimore Police Department and its community, BPD Commissioner Anthony Batts admitted to CNN that police officers were a part of the problem. And now, he said, it's time for that to change.

"The community needs to hear that," he said on CNN yesterday. "The community needs to hear from us that we haven't been part of the solution, and now we have to evolve."

Batts said that the first step in patching together a relationship is for police officers to acknowledge that there are problems. Speaking to both his department and police officers across the nation, he said that things were not going to change overnight, but it was important to implement programs that would bring police officers into Black neighborhoods.

It's going to be a long journey," Batts said. "You can see the distrust that's out there, and we have to find inroads to sit down with people—to show care, to show empathy."