BALTIMORE, MD – The cold-blooded killing of a Baltimore police officer earlier this month has left a family shattered and a community questioning why the senseless, cowardly killing of a dedicated public servant isn’t generating the outrage in the media that the deaths of far less scrupulous individuals generally have.
According to the Baltimore Police Department, Officer Keona Holley, 39, was sitting in her patrol car in Curtis Bay working an overtime shift when at approximately 1:30 a.m. on December 16 she was ambushed and shot in the head in a surprise, unprovoked attack.
Two men – Elliot Knox, 31, and Travon Shaw, 32 – have been arrested and charged in her shooting, in addition to a second shooting in southwest Baltimore shortly afterwards that resulted in the death of Justin Johnson, 38. Police say the motive for the two shootings is currently unknown.
Holley, a dedicated mother of four who joined the police department two years ago “to make a difference,” had been on life support at the University of Maryland Shock Trauma Center since the shooting. On the evening of December 24 – one week after she had been shot – her family made “the most difficult decision” to remove her from life support after consulting with her doctors. She was pronounced dead shortly after, police said.
“Baltimore will never forget Officer Holley’s sacrifice and commitment to making a difference in her beloved city,” Mayor Brandon Scott said. “I ask that everyone please keep Officer Holley’s family in your prayers as they endure the holiday season without their mother, daughter, sister and loyal friend.”
Holley’s death has resulted in dead silence from many of the major media outlets – including The New York Times – which has not covered to killing.
Baltimore City Police commissioner Michael Harrison said both suspects have previously committed violent crimes.
As of November 30, 67 police officers had been murdered by criminals in 2021 in the line of duty; in 2019, there were 697,196 sworn police officers nationally, and taking that number into consideration, that death toll would represent 9.6 officers per 100,000 officers, which means that 2021 saw a 56 percent increase in police murders when compared to 2020.
This places the murder of police at much higher rates than most other groups in the United States when compared to overall population percentages. So where is the outrage for Officer Keona Holley?