Portraits of Baltimore Cops in Riot Gear Just Before the City Went Over the Edge

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Portraits of Baltimore Cops in Riot Gear Just Before the City Went Over the Edge

"Some are laughing, some are bored, some are afraid. All are human."
April 28, 2015, 2:52pm

As you've probably heard by now, on Monday night Baltimore turned itself inside-out in an all-too-familiar spectacle of rage rooted in the mistreatment of the city's black community at the hands of the police. Photographer Theo Anthony, who lives in Baltimore, was on the scene with his camera. "Things got pretty crazy," he told VICE. "I got a 40 smashed over my head and the shit beat out of me, but all the camera gear made it."

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Instead of focusing on the scenes that got splashed on the front pages of newspapers across the country—burning cars, angry looters, rows of riot shields—Anthony decided to focus on the faces of individual cops just before the city went over the edge.

"Rather than focus on the spectacle of a Baltimore in flames, I tried to turn the attention to where it should be and should remain: on the agents of systemic violence and injustices that would cause a violent reaction like this in the first place," Anthony told VICE. "Looking at the helmeted faces of these officers, some are laughing, some are bored, some are afraid. All are human."

View more of Theo Anthony's work here.