Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan (R) said Tuesday that Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake (D) waited about three hours before asking the state government to declare a state of emergency and send in troops to help stop the riots that broke out Monday afternoon.
"This violence started I think about 3 o'clock yesterday afternoon," Hogan told reporters. "We were in constant communication. Finally, I believe around 6 o'clock, the mayor ... requested us to bring in the National Guard and declare a state of emergency."
Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan (R) said the state was ready to start helping Baltimore right away with Monday's rioting, but said the city's mayor waited about three hours before asking for that help. AP Photo/J Pat Carter
Hogan said his office had been preparing for the possibility of violence since the weekend, after reports that 25-year-old Freddie Gray died of a spinal injury after being apprehended by police.
"We had, prior to that, taken preliminary action to prepare the state for if, in fact, violence did take place, if the city did call us and ask for the assistance," Hogan said. "We had already activated our emergency command center as of last Saturday. I had already talked to the National Guard. I had already been in communication with the White House."
"The National Guard had already been put on alert," he added.
He said once Rawlings-Blake asked the state for help, it took about "30 seconds" to start moving, because the state was ready. He also said the decision was made to wait for her request because she's in charge of the city.
"We didn't think it was appropriate to come in and take over the city without the request," he said.
Hogan said more National Guard troops and others will make their presence known tonight, and said of the prospects of more violence Tuesday evening, "It's not going to happen tonight."
"Our response has been incredible," he said. "As I said, we acted instantaneously, and I'm very proud of the effort by all of the state and the local partners that have been working together."