Responding to an uptick in violent crime in downtown Towson, Baltimore County leaders plan to hold a public safety walk in Towson’s business district Wednesday.
During the event, leaders including Baltimore County Executive Johnny Olszewski and Police Chief Dennis Delp will talk with residents and business owners about the issue.
Most recently, a 17-year-old boy was shot and killed Monday evening near Towson Town Center and Towson Circle. Last week, a man was shot in the same area and weeks earlier a transgender woman was stabbed.
On WBAL radio Tuesday, Olszewski defended the county and department’s approach to crime in Towson.
“We recently increased police presence. We have worked with the community to have more cameras,” Olszewski said. “We have worked with the mall to have a parental policy enforced. We are going to keep doing whatever it takes to make sure that Towson is a safe place.”
However, Olszewski Monday’s fatal shooting was unacceptable.
“We see a lot of people are coming to Towson. It’s a vibrant community,” Olszewski said. “We welcome all who want to come and behave appropriately. But we expect better and demand better of people who are there.”
Nancy Hafford, executive director of the Towson Chamber of Commerce, said the public safety walk will be important to send a message to residents and visitors.
“I think the most important thing is to show the community that lives here and more so the community from around Towson … that our community works together to keep Towson safe,” she said.
While the chamber is pleased with the police and county response to the recent crimes, Hafford said more needs to be done to ensure people convicted of crimes in the county receive appropriate sentences.
Hafford said she expected some additional announcements Wednesday about Towson safety.
“I think a lot will come out there and I think there’s going to be some information from the county that will come out,” Hafford said. “There’s going to be changes.”
The walk begins at 5:45 p.m. Wednesday at Towson Chamber of Commerce in the unit block of West Chesapeake Avenue.