UPDATED (5:06 p.m.)—Sen. Jim Brochin said Tuesday that Baltimore County residents don't feel safe visiting Baltimore and called on Gov. Martin O'Malley and Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake to use Maryland State Police to patrol the Inner Harbor.
The Towson Democrat made his comments weeks after Del. Pat McDonough, a Middle River Republican, called on O'Malley and Rawlings-Blake to deal with "black youth mobs" and declared the Inner Harbor a no travel zone.
"My constituents are talking about this and they say they don't feel safe going down there and they aren't going down there," Brochin said, adding that he disagreed with McDonough's racially-charged presentation but agreed that something needs to be done to make the area safer.
"Everyone knows that most of the people in these incidents are black youth but you don't have to say 'black youth mobs," Brochin said. "You only inflame the issue. The part of [McDonough's] issue that is solid is that the city resources can only be stretched so far and there are only so many police officers they can hire."
Brochin said O'Malley and Rawlings-Blake should put together a task force and look at the idea of using state police in the Inner Harbor area during the tourist season.
"All you have to do is look at the video from St. Patrick's Day and you'll see 100 youths running and wilding down the street," Brochin said.
The issue is one of importance to county residents, according to Brochin.
"I'm out door-knocking in my district and constituents in my old and new district are talking about this and saying they don't feel safe going down there and they're not going," Brochin said. "Everyone knows the people of Baltimore County are one of the engines that drive the economy in Baltimore City."
Brochin said he and Councilmen Todd Huff and David Marks, two Republicans, worked together to solve issues related to problems with youths near the Towson Town Center.
O'Malley and Rawlings-Blake are dismissing the issue because it comes from McDonough, according to Brochin.
"That put me over the top. Their response is nothing," said Brochin.
A spokesman for Rawlings-Blake declined to comment for this post.
North Baltimore Patch Local Editor Adam Bednar contributed to this report.