BALTIMORE, Md. – Baltimore is about to throw out nearly 800 convictions after State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby listed nearly two dozen officers that she found untrustworthy within the system.
What began as a group of eight police officers from a task force who were convicted of crimes involving planting evidence and falsifying reports has grown into 22 officers that Mosby says can’t be trusted.
The Baltimore Sun said that of the 22 officers named in Mosby’s request to the court, three officers are still on the department’s payroll – Robert Hankard, a detective in central Baltimore who is currently suspended; Kenneth Ivery, a sergeant in Southwest Baltimore; and Jason Giordano, a sergeant in the citywide robbery unit.
Marilyn Mosby, Baltimore state's attorney, is asking for 790 criminal cases to be tossed after several were linked to city officers convicted in the Gun Trace Task Force scandal. https://t.co/aCf34ltwO6
— WJZ | CBS Baltimore (@wjz) October 4, 2019
Ten other officers have since resigned. One officer was fired and one retired. The State’s Attorney says she has no choice but to ask the courts to throw out their convictions, saying the integrity of the cases has been compromised.
“When you have sworn police officers involved in egregious and long-standing criminal activity such as planting guns and drugs, stealing drugs and money, selling drugs, making illegal arrests, and bringing false charges, our legal and ethical obligation in the pursuit of justice leaves us no other recourse but to ‘right the wrongs’ of unjust convictions associated with corrupt police officers,” Mosby wrote in an email.
Mosby is looking at every individual case tied to the notorious Gun Trace Task Force, along with the 14 other officers that she expressed distrust in. Now she’s looking at overturning convictions and throwing out as many as 800 criminal cases, MSN reported.
Now, Mosby’s office is submitting papers for charge dismissal in approximately 200 cases a week, with hearings taking place each afternoon.
A judge’s decision on the outcome of the cases is expected to be presented next month.
Authorities say that body cam footage was integral in the investigation into the eight Baltimore officers. That same footage was used to convict the officers of some serious charges. All eight were found guilty of racketeering, armed robbery, selling drugs, falsifying overtime and planting evidence on suspects they arrested.
Sources say that only one member of the GTTF task force was found to not be involved in the shady tactics.
“Police corruption is a hindrance to public safety, puts the lives of hard working and dedicated officers at risk, and limits our ability as prosecutors to deliver justice,” Mosby wrote.
Former detective Jemell Rayam was just one of the eight officers to be convicted of some serious crimes back in May. Rayam was said to have committed 15 robberies over eight years, and prosecutors say he stole $79,000.
“Rayam schemed to steal money, property, and narcotics by detaining victims, entering residences, conducting traffic stops, and swearing out false search warrant affidavits,” the U.S. Attorney’s office said. “In addition, Rayam prepared and submitted false official incident and arrest reports, reports of property seized from arrestees, and charging documents. The false reports concealed the fact that Rayam and his co-conspirators had stolen money, property, and narcotics from individuals.”
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The government had recommended the 12-year sentence that former Det. Rayam ultimately received—Rayam’s attorney asked for 3 years. The guidelines called for 15 to 19 years. Rayam sold heroin and other drugs and robbed a woman at gunpoint—among his many crimes. @wjz pic.twitter.com/MxMNJyOeKV
— Mike Hellgren (@HellgrenWJZ) May 28, 2019
“It’s never too late to do the right thing,“ Rayam said in court before his sentence was handed down. “How can I ask Your Honor for mercy when I took an oath? I can’t ask for mercy, but I can ask that you see a man who admits what he did. I’m sorry to the city of Baltimore and I’m ready to face my consequences.”
But his confession didn’t do much to save him.
“This case exposed crime and corruption being committed by those sworn to uphold the law and protect citizens,” U.S. Attorney Robert Hur said in a statement. “We will prosecute criminals whether they wear a badge or not.”
Following the convictions of the Baltimore officers back in May, Mosby said a ripple effect would be spreading through the system over everything the officers had touched – especially the convictions they had secured in their time with the task force.
Federal prosecutor said in court today that more than 2000 cases have been impacted by the corrupt BPD Gun Trace Task Force @wjz
— Mike Hellgren (@HellgrenWJZ) May 28, 2019
Mosby said that a new piece of legislation is to thank for the ability to dive back in and reinvestigate and potentially overturn those convictions that had been made under false pretenses.
“I applaud Delegate Erek Barron and the hard work of my policy and legislative affairs team for securing legislation which will allow us to finally right nearly 800 cases impacted by the wrongful and illegal acts of the gun trace task force,” Mosby said.
The law was just signed and went into effect at the beginning of the month.
- READ: HE THREW MOLOTOV COCKTAILS AT POLICE AND CHARGED THEM WITH A MACHETE. SUSPECT: I DIDN’T WANT TO HURT ANYONE.