BALTIMORE - Balloons and a teddy bear are markings that someone died in the 1800 block of Ruxton Ave. There are not one, not two, but three memorials.
"It's stupid. It's over drugs or a female," said Debbie Atkinson, a Coppin Heights resident.
Baltimore police believe drugs have dominated the block in Coppin Heights for years.
Atkinson shared her grandson's brush with the violence just a week ago.
"My grandson just got stuck up by an old addict and took his cell phone and took his money. I'm just glad that he didn't shoot him," said Atkinson.
He's alive but others have taken their last breath here, including a 20-year-old man two weeks ago. Police and the prosecutor's office worked for a month to watch the area and pinpoint the suspects.
"They are the perpetuators of the violence. They are the targets of the violence, and they are frequently both," said Gregg Bernstein, Baltimore State’s Attorney.
On Wednesday, nine people were indicted. Police say Karon Shaw was the ringleader.
Police say 64 violent crimes have happened on just three blocks in just three years. Debbie Atkinson hopes getting rid of the drugs will get rid of violence.
"If you don't let them come in and settle, you won't have the problem," said Atkinson.
Police are still trying to track down four of the nine people who were indicted. The commissioner says there is a plan in place to stabilize the community following the breakup of a drug network.
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