Can former felons save Freddie Gray’s neighborhood?

Just wanted to share a story of mine published in the Washington Post Magazine, about Baltimore using former violent criminals to mediate gun conflicts in some of the city’s most dangerous neighborhoods through a group called Safe Streets—which is in danger of closing entirely.

They’re doing this in Freddie Gray’s neighborhood of Sandtown now, and that’s what the Post Mag piece was about. We followed the group over a period of 3 months after they officially started up in March. The city doesn’t fund Safe Streets, though; it relies totally on grant money. But without additional funding, all 5 Safe Streets sites, including Sandtown, are going to close. Today, after a fight with Maryland governor Larry Hogan, the city just got half a million to keep this going through January. Whether it lasts past then is still uncertain.

Story photos by Andre Chung.

#longreads