Jul 28, 2014
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Flags Lowered to Honor Baltimore's First Black Police Commissioner

The city's first African-American police commissioner joined the force at a time when black officers couldn't patrol white neighborhoods or drive patrol cars.

Flags Lowered to Honor Baltimore's First Black Police Commissioner

Flags across Maryland should be flying at half staff today in honor of Bishop Lee Robinson Sr., Baltimore City's first African-American Police Commissioner, says WTOP.

Gov. Martin O'Malley ordered the flags lowered Tuesday, a day after Robinson died at age 86. The flags will stay lowered through sunset on Wednesday, the station reports.

Robinson joined the city Police Department on Jan. 17, 1952, as a foot patrolman, the Baltimore Sun reports. At that time, black police officers could not patrol white neighborhoods or be assigned police cars.

Then Mayor William Donald Schaefer appointed Robinson the city’s first black police commissioner in 1984, says WJZ.When Schaefer was elected governor, he appointed Robinson to the post of secretary of public safety and correctional services.

Robinson died from Alzheimer’s at Gilchrist Hospice Care in Towson, the TV station says.

An obituary published in The Baltimore Sun says funeral services and an interment will be private and a memorial service will be held at a later date.

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