William “Billy” Murphy, a top trial attorney in Baltimore, could be called as a witness in the case against Ken Ravenell, a former partner of Murphy’s who is accused of helping drug dealers commit and cover up crimes.
Murphy, who worked with Ravenell until 2014 when Ravenell left the Murphy Falcon Murphy firm to start his own practice, is listed as one of 39 “potential witnesses, victims, co-conspirators, or co-defendants” identified by government investigators, according to a motion filed Monday by Ravenell’s attorney, Lucius T. Outlaw III.
Magistrate Judge Theresa Buchanan ruled Monday that Ravenell cannot have any contact with Murphy or the other listed attorneys and is not allowed to discuss the case with any current or former employees of Murphy’s firm.
Murphy is not charged with any wrongdoing. Prosecutors might decide not to call him as a witness even though he’s on their list.
Murphy’s office was raided in 2014 by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration and the Internal Revenue Service, but officials never explained the purpose of the raid.
Ravenell is accused of “assisting drug dealers [to] sell drugs, laundering the proceeds of drug dealers and then attempting to cover up their crimes by obstructing investigations of the drug dealers."
Ravenell has represented a number of high-profile clients since leaving Murphy’s firm. He defended Keon Gray, the West Baltimore man found guilty of second-degree murder in the death of 7-year-old Taylor Hayes, who was killed by a stray bullet while seated in the back of a car.