By Mike DeNardo
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Mayor Nutter says Philadelphia police are not heading to Baltimore, to help quell the violence there, unless he gets an official request.
This morning at City Hall, the mayor said that with Baltimore city officers, Maryland state police, and the Maryland National Guard on duty, there’s no move for Philadelphia police to assist the already serious law enforcement presence in Baltimore.
“There are certainly a significant number of resources on the ground there already,” Nutter told KYW Newsradio. “If we get a formal request, then we will do our best to assess what that request is and how we can possibly be helpful.”
But right now, Nutter says, that request has not come. In the meantime, he says, demonstrators there need to take personal responsibility for their actions.
“I’m not sure at the end of the day what the CVS, the liquor store, the check cashing place, or getting a plasma TV has to do with seeking justice for Freddie Gray,” he said.
Nutter says the protesters are entitled to free speech but not free stuff.
CBS 3’s Walt Hunter reports while the Mayor says he won’t “second guess” Baltimore’s mayor and the state’s governor, he did tell reporters he disagreed with the decision to bring in National Guard troops.
Nutter asked that everyone “stay focused” on the search for answers about Gray’s death and about reforms in community-police relations, not allowing those goals to be obscured by violence.
Meanwhile, Pennsylvania state troopers have been put on alert that some may be deployed to help restore calm in Baltimore.
KYW’s Tony Romeo reports that according to trooper Adam Reed, a Pennsylvania state police spokesman, Maryland made a request last night for help through what is known as the Emergency Management Assistance Compact:
“They put out the request for assistance, and state officials here in Pennsylvania will respond to that saying that we could offer, for example, ‘X’ number of troopers and ‘X’ number of pieces of equipment. And then Maryland will then say, ‘That sounds good.’ ”
Reed said Pennsylvania made its offer of assistance this morning and was awaiting Maryland’s response.
He says the last time Pennsylvania sent troopers to help a neighboring state was in 2012, when troopers were deployed to New Jersey to help in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy.