Former Ravens linebacker Ray Lewis posted an emotional appeal Wednesday in response to the riots in Baltimore.
The 17-year player of the Ravens said in a video message posted on his Facebook account: “No way, no way this can happen in our city. No!”
Lewis, is filmed sitting in a chair with signed game-balls behind him, saying: “Young kids you got to understand something, get off the streets. Violence is not the answer, violence has never been the answer.”
I’ve got a message for the rioters in Baltimore. #BaltimoreRiots
Posted by Ray Lewis on Tuesday, 28 April 2015
Riots erupted in Baltimore on Wednesday following the funeral of Freddie Gray who died from a severe spinal injury he suffered in police custody. Rioters looted shops, torched a pharmacy, set police cars on fire and threw bricks at police officers.
“We know there is a deeper issue, we know what the jungle looks like, but this isn’t it,” Lewis said.
Lewis said he understands the problem that the city faces, but that rioting is wrong. He urged the rioters and protesters to get off the streets and go home.
“The sad part is, we got young kids telling us how they are going to dictate our city, that won’t happen.”
“Stop the violence man, go home!”
One of the most accomplished linebackers in NFL history, Lewis was a first-round pick (26th overall) of the Baltimore Ravens back in 1996, out of the University of Miami, and anchored their always-stingy defense for 17 seasons.
A 13-time Pro Bowl selection and seven-time First-Team All-Pro pick, Lewis led Baltimore to Super Bowl wins following the 2000 and 2012 seasons.
Lewis, who retired following Super Bowl XLVII, is generally considered one of the greatest linebackers in NFL history.