P. Kenneth Burns

Reporter

Kenneth Burns is WYPR's Metro Reporter; covering issues that affect Baltimore City, Anne Arundel and Baltimore counties.

Prior to joining WYPR, Kenneth worked at WBAL Radio and WNAV in Annapolis.

The Prince George's County native has been a journalist since high school. He was a teen editor with Children's Express, later becoming news editor with Young D.C., a newspaper written by high school students. He started his professional career during his first year in college at WTOP in Washington, D.C. Other career stops includes the Radio America Network and Salem Communications as a producer. He also was a news contributor to WGMD in Rehoboth Beach, Delaware.

Kenneth, who lives in Baltimore, earned his associate's degree from Anne Arundel Community College and his bachelor's degree in political science from Towson University. He is a member of the Society of Professional Journalists, the National Association of Black Journalists and the Online News Association.

You can keep up with his "notebook" at kennethburns.tumblr.com and follow him on twitter @PKBNews.

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Baltimore Police

Prosecutors played the statement police Officer Edward Nero gave to investigators during the second day of Nero’s trial.  The state spent much of the day focused on what took place on April 12, 2015; the day of the arrest.

P. Kenneth Burns / WYPR

During opening statements, Chief Deputy State's Attorney Michael Schatzow told Baltimore Circuit Judge Barry Williams that Officer Edward Nero disregarded his police training when he chased Freddie Gray and arrested him without probable cause, and was callously indifferent to the 25-year-old's wellbeing when he failed to secure him in a seatbelt.

Schatzow spent about 20 minutes laying out the state's argument.

Nero: Baltimore Police/Williams: Maryland Judiciary

  Baltimore Circuit Judge Barry Williams granted Tuesday morning a request from police Officer Edward Nero for a bench trial.

Nero has been charged with second degree assault, misconduct in office and reckless endangerment in the case of Freddie Gray, who died from a broken neck suffered while in the back of a police van last year.

Baltimore Police

After months of delays and action by Maryland’s highest court, trials against six police officers accused in the death of Freddie Gray were to resume Tuesday morning at Courthouse East with pre-trial motions.  But the actual trial will be put off for one more day.

Baltimore State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby asked for a one day delay in the start of Officer Edward Nero’s trial because a power outage in her office over the weekend slowed preparations.  Nero’s lawyers said they had no objection. 

Once the trial begins, prosecutors are expected to argue that Nero, one of the arresting officers, did not have the authority to chase Gray on April 12, 2015.  That made Gray’s arrest illegal and putting him in handcuffs amounted to assault.

TIFs: The primer

May 5, 2016
P. Kenneth Burns / WYPR

Baltimore is about to deal with another controversial tax financing package for re-developing part of the city.  This time it’s a $535 million deal for Kevin Plank’s Sagamore Development, which is proposing a huge mixed-use project at Port Covington in South Baltimore.

P. Kenneth Burns / WYPR

The Baltimore City Board of School Commissioners announced Tuesday that Dr. Gregory Thorton will leave his post as schools CEO on Friday. But the move has been in the works for months.

Marnell Cooper, chairman of the school commissioner board, said the search was conducted quietly so the school system would not be distracted.

The board named Dr. Sonja Santelises, a vice president at The Education Trust - a non-profit that focuses on achievement gaps – in Washington, D.C., to replace Thornton.  She is to take over July 1. Tammy Turner, the school system’s general counsel since 2006, will be acting CEO in the interim.

P. Kenneth Burns

    

The Rev. Jamal Bryant, who delivered the eulogy at Freddie Gray’s funeral, says he wanted to deliver a message that spoke both to the 25-year-old’s mourning family and to an angry community.

Baltimore Police

  On May 1, 2015 – two weeks after Freddie Gray’s death - Baltimore State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby stood before the world at the War Memorial to announce charges against six officers she says were responsible for Freddie Gray’s death.

University of Maryland Law Professor Doug Colbert says that was a rare occurrence.

“You must recognize the unusual nature of bringing criminal charges against any of the officers who are from the department that they depend upon for prosecution and ultimately conviction,” he says.

Kenneth Burns

State Senator Catherine Pugh claimed victory last night in a tightly contested Democratic mayoral primary that became tighter as the evening went on, then focused on unity and moving forward in her victory speech. 

P. Kenneth Burns

  Councilman Warren Branch barely held on to his seat representing the 13th district on the Baltimore City Council in 2011.  He won the Democratic primary that year by 43 votes. Shannon Sneed, who would later mount a write-in campaign in the general election, came that close to defeating the incumbent. And she’s back.

Tony Glover, who came in a distant third in the Democratic primary five years ago, is also running again, as is Ronald Owens-Bey, who ran as a Libertarian in 2011.

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