Butler County SWAT team returns from Baltimore streets - Cincinnati News, FOX19-WXIX TV

Butler County SWAT team returns from Baltimore streets

The Butler County Sheriff's Office sent a six-member SWAT team to Baltimore Tuesday morning. (Provided by the Butler County Sheriff's Office) The Butler County Sheriff's Office sent a six-member SWAT team to Baltimore Tuesday morning. (Provided by the Butler County Sheriff's Office)
HAMILTON, OH (FOX19) – - A six-member Butler County SWAT team returns home Friday after hitting the streets of Baltimore.

Butler County Sheriff Richard K. Jones sent the team on Monday to patrol "hot spots" after unrest broke out earlier this week. 

"With the atmosphere being much calmer than previous nights, I made the decision to bring them home," said Jones.

The team arrived in Baltimore before dark Tuesday and were sworn into the Baltimore Police Department by 12:30 a.m. Their last security detail ended Thursday night.

"We can't send them out every week. We don't have the resources for that, but this is a very unusual situation," he said in an appearance on FOX19 NOW Morning News.

Jones said on Tuesday that if unrest continued he wouldn't rule out sending another team should a similar situation develop in Baltimore or elsewhere in the nation.

"It's going to be a very tense summer, I'm afraid."

Butler County also responded to help with recovery efforts after Hurricane Katrina in 2005.

"When a call like that goes out, if you don't send people you can't expect people to come when you need them," Jones said.

He was prompted to send the team to Maryland after Gov. Larry Hogan declared a state of emergency, called up the National Guard and put out a plea for assistance from as many as 5,000 police from other states.

"It looks like total anarchy and when they are burning things down, police are getting assaulted, it's a small percentage of people," Jones told FOX 19 NOW. "But they are calling for help. The police need help. The law-abiding citizens need help, (the unrest) can spread to other states. We all should help and chip in."

The destruction perplexes and troubles the sheriff.

“I don't get it, I understand the right to be upset, I get the right to freedom of speech, but what I will never understand is the mentality to completely destroy a city unless you're nothing more than a low-life criminal," he said. "There is not a reason in the world to act like a thug criminal and set fires, loot, assault people and officers. What do you gain from that? I'm appalled that citizens are destroying their own livelihood and using the excuse, yes, excuse that they are upset over the death of Mr. (Freddie) Gray."

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