You probably remember the sad tale of poor Phoenix, the pit bull that suffered 3rd degree burns at the hands of two Baltimore teens. What you may not know is that the two boys, twin brothers Tremayne and Travers Johnson, housed their pit bulls in a vacant West Baltimore rowhome: 1616 N. Gilmor Street (Baltimore City Council District 7). The house is owned by Olivia Anderson of the same address.
The incident with Phoenix further illustrates the need for the city to clean up its act with regard to vacant property. According to ASA Jennifer Rallo, the police found signs of dogs and gang activity at the Gilmor Street house — another result of Broken Window Syndrome. Hopefully this case will not only serve as a warning to those who abuse animals, it will serve as a warning to the city. Allowing homes to remain vacant and unsecured is simply another link in the chain of criminal behavior that keeps Baltimore City in its third-class city status. If we are to ever become a first-rate city, we have to tackle the problem of housing, with sustainable and well thought-out methods.