7th indicted Baltimore police officer remains in jail after detention hearing is postponed

Detention hearing for last Baltimore officer indicted on racketeering charges postponed

The final Baltimore police officer indicted this week on federal racketeering charges remained behind bars on Friday afternoon after a scheduled detention hearing was postponed when he suffered an unspecified medical issue, his attorneys said.

Detective Marcus Taylor is the only officer of the seven indicted Wednesday who has not had such a hearing. The six other officers were all ordered held in jail pending trial by U.S. Magistrate Judge Stephanie Gallagher during their hearings Thursday.

Taylor's attorneys declined to say what his medical issues were, but said he was fine as of Friday night.

The office of U.S. Attorney for Maryland Rod J. Rosenstein said prosecutors had agreed with Taylor's counsel to the postponement.

A new date for Taylor's hearing has not been set.

All seven officers are alleged to have engaged in a scheme to rob and extort Baltimore residents, file false court documents, and make false overtime claims. They are alleged to have stolen hundreds of thousands of dollars, some of it from law-abiding citizens, and to have worked together to cover up their actions.

One detective, Momodu Gondo, is also accused of participating in an illegal drug organization.

Gondo and four other detectives — Evodio Hendrix, Daniel Hersl, Jemell Rayam and Maurice Ward — also were arraigned at their hearings Thursday, and all pleaded not guilty to all charges. Sgt. Wayne Jenkins had a hearing but was not arraigned.

Gallagher determined there were no pretrial conditions sufficient to ensure public safety were she to release the officers, and ordered their continued detention. A trial date has not been set.

The postponement of Taylor's hearing appeared to be a last-minute decision.

A large number of Taylor's family members and supporters arrived at U.S. District Court in downtown Baltimore for his scheduled 2 p.m. hearing, where they huddled with Taylor's counsel, attorneys Justin Eisele and Mirriam Seddiq, before departing.

The family members and Taylor's attorneys declined to comment on the case.

Prosecutors had successfully argued to Gallagher on Thursday that Jenkins, Gondo, Hendrix, Hersl, Rayam and Ward should be held in jail pending trial because they had shown through their actions that they could not be trusted and were capable of evading supervision.

Gallagher said the allegations against the officers — including witness intimidation — suggested an "egregious breach of public trust" and a "serious risk" that they would seek to obstruct justice in their cases were they released.

U.S. Magistrate Judge A. David Copperthite had been scheduled to preside over Taylor's hearing.

krector@baltsun.com

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