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OTR Interviews

Baltimore pastor: Residents want a strong police force

This is a rush transcript from "On the Record," June 15, 2015. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

GRETA VAN SUSTEREN, FOX NEWS HOST: The pastor of a Baltimore church in one the city's most violent neighborhoods now calling for more police to face head-on the massive spike in Baltimore violence.

Pastor of the New Bethlehem Baptist Church in Baltimore, Reverend Dr. Lisa Weah joins us.

Good evening, Doctor.

DR. LISA WEAH, PASTOR, NEW BETHLEHEM BAPTIST CHURCH, BALTIMORE: Good evening, Greta.

VAN SUSTEREN: Doctor, I understand that you think you need more police, or you need more police attention, tell me.

WEAH: Well, we have seen a definite decrease in law enforcement presence over the past several weeks. And we definitely need a strong presence in our city, especially in times of unrest like right now.

VAN SUSTEREN: Why do you think that the police presence has gone down?

WEAH: Well, clearly, clearly, there has been a breakdown in the relationship between law enforcement and the community. And if we are going to have a strong community, then every aspect of the community must be working together. And so we have to repair this relationship and get our officers back in place so that we can have a community where everyone, everyone feels safe and secure community where our young people are safe as well. We have lost 22 young people since the beginning of this year. That is unacceptable.

VAN SUSTEREN: You know, Pastor, you know, Dr. Weah, who I actually hold responsible for this, for this breakdown is -- I was in Baltimore talking to some police and it's these politicians in the community. They get money to try to fix these problems and they don't fix the problems. You know, there are no jobs in the inner city. There are no -- the education system is bad. I see a lot of mothers who want the very best for their children. I mean, they have got this horrible situation. And the police are sort of stuck between. And they get blamed a lot because a lot of the promises from the politicians aren't fulfilled. And a lot of these communities are really, really rough and they're resentful towards the police.

WEAH: You know, Greta, and that has been a point that we have been working on over these past several weeks, because we understand that unless we are all united working together for the good of the people and not for any one's personal agenda, then we are not going to fix these problems. We absolutely must fix the underlying systemic problems that have led us to this point. It's going to take a village to change a village.

VAN SUSTEREN: Well, the police are feeling pretty bruised, and I understand why. I hope that it gets fixed pretty soon.

Doctor, I hope you will come back because I have a feeling this problem is not going to go away fast.

WEAH: I certainly will. And keep us in prayer.

VAN SUSTEREN: All right. Thank you.