The Wall Street Journal reports that the Maryland state legislature approved of Johns Hopkins University, located in Baltimore, creating an armed police unit.
The move was controversial because, while many universities have their own law enforcement departments, this would be the first armed force on a college campus in the state. Governor Larry Hogan supports the measure and is expected to sign it into law.
Johns Hopkins pursued the idea because the City of Baltimore has become quite violent of late, with four straight years of more than 300 murders, even though the population is just over 600,000. Baltimore has the highest murder rate per capita in the country for cities larger than 500,000 people.
Not everyone supported the measure.
Democratic State Senator Jill Carter of Baltimore noted:
We’re not in a state where we need more policing, particularly privately owned policing.
It’s not clear if the Senator offered an alternative that would bring down the murder and violent crime rate in Baltimore without more policing of any kind.