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Fmr. Baltimore Police Commissioner Speaks Out

Former Baltimore Police Commissioner Anthony Batts gave his first interview since being fired from his position to CBS News Justice and Homeland Security Correspondent Jeff Pegues Wednesday evening.

Yesterday marked the one year anniversary of the Baltimore riots after the funeral of Freddie Gray, a 25-year-old Black man who died while in police custody. Batts was fired and had maintained his silence until speaking with Pegues.

“I’m telling you that the mayor never told me or gave me an order to stand down,” Batts said in the interview, according to a press release sent to JET. “I never heard her any given point in time give anybody an order to stand down. I never told anybody to stand down.”

Within days, six police officers had been arrested on various charges for putting Gray in a police van unrestrained and denying him medical care for 45 minutes. Gray mysteriously suffered a severed spine as a result of his altercation with police.

In regards to how the Baltimore protests were handled, Batts said the real problem was training.

“We just didn’t have enough time to get prepared the way that we should, and that falls on me,” he said. “I take accountability for that protest.”

Watch the full interview here.