Sun Investigates:

Prosecutors say number of criminal cases to be dropped for reliance on indicted Baltimore gun unit rises to 125

Prosecutors have now dropped or plan to drop a total of 125 criminal cases that rely on the testimony of eight Baltimore police officers indicted this year on federal racketeering charges, they said last week.

Those include more than 50 adjudicated cases that prosecutors successfully reopened, only to drop, in consultation with defense counsel.

More than two dozen such motions are pending, and more than a dozen have been denied, prosecutors said — meaning judges rejected joint requests for closed cases involving the indicted officers to be reopened.

Dozens of additional drug and gun cases remain under review, as prosecutors reassess the involvement of eight members of the department’s now-dismantled Gun Trace Task Force had in them.

Nearly three dozen have been reviewed and deemed valid through the presence of evidence unrelated to the indicted officers, prosecutors said.

The officers are accused of robbing residents, filing false court paperwork and making fraudulent overtime claims. Five have pleaded guilty.

The others have pleaded not guilty or have not entered a plea.

Last week, prosecutors also announced updated numbers of criminal cases that have been affected by three separate investigations into police arrests in which body-camera footage has raised questions. Defense attorneys have suggested officers can be seen planting evidence, though that has been challenged by law enforcement officials, participants in the incidents and their attorneys.

The Police Department is still investigating all of the body-camera cases.

Prosecutors said they have now dropped — or will drop if more time isn’t granted for additional investigation — more than 200 criminal cases linked to officers involved in the recorded incidents.

Baltimore State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby’s office said last week that it is continuing “to employ significant resources to thoroughly assess” the cases linked to the officers involved in the body-camera footage and the gun unit.

“We will continue to share the progress of this comprehensive review of the impacted cases with the community,” Mosby said in a statement Monday. “Public trust is essential to the success of the criminal justice system and our ability to effectively prosecute crime. We will do our part to minimize any erosion to this trust and remain vigilant in our pursuit of justice.”

Slightly smaller numbers of affected cases were provided in September.

krector@baltsun.com

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