The local lodge of the Fraternal Order of Police in Baltimore is calling on states’ attorney Marilyn Mosby to recuse herself from the case involving six policemen who have been indicted for killing Freddie Gray because of a conflict of interest.
Mosby has a personal relationship with the attorney for Freddie Gray’s family and her husband is a Baltimore city councilman.
The letter from Gene Ryan, president of Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 3, also states that none of the six officers involved in Gray’s arrest and death were responsible for the 25-year-old West Baltimore man’s death that spurred protests and unrest, including rioting and looting on Monday. The letter was released just minutes before Mosby announced charges against the officers.
“Not one of the officers involved in this tragic situation left home in the morning with the anticipation that someone with whom they interacted would not go home that night,” the letter states. “As tragic as this situation is, none of the officers involved are responsible for the death of Mr. Gray.”
Ryan requests that Mosby appoint a “Special Independent Prosecutor.”
“I have very deep concerns about the many conflicts of interest presented by your office conducting an investigation in this case,” the letter states.
“These conflicts include your personal and professional relations with Gray family attorney, William Murphy, and the lead prosecutor’s connections with members of the local media,” the letter states. “Based on several nationally televised interviews, these reporters are likely to be witnesses in any potential litigation regarding this incident.”
Murphy supported Mosby during her campaign last year. He donated $5,000 to her campaign and served on her transition committee.
In a statement to The Baltimore Sun, Mosby said the Gray case doesn’t pose any conflicts for her and the police union donated to other candidates in election to be the state’s attorney.“State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby has been elected by the residents in Baltimore City to uphold the law in every neighborhood including her own, regardless of if her husband is the councilman within the district where numerous crimes occur,” said spokeswoman Rochelle Ritchie. “Hundreds of people donated to her campaign. There is no conflict of interest surrounding Billy Murphy. He is representing the family in a civil case which has nothing to do with the criminal case.”
The FOP letter also expresses problems with Mosby’s marriage to Baltimore City Councilman Nick Mosby.
“Most importantly, it is clear that your husband’s political future will be directly impacted, for better or worse, by the outcome of your investigation,” the letter states. “In order to avoid any appearance of impropriety or a violation of the Professional Rules of Professional Responsibility, I ask that you appoint a Special Prosecutor to determine whether or not any charges should be filed.”
Several prominent attorneys have come out against the rush to judgment against the police by prosecutor Mosby, including Alan Dershowitz:
Alan Dershowitz really went after Baltimore State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby today for charging the six cops involved in the death of Freddie Gray, saying it was entirely based on politics and “crowd control.”
Dershowitz lamented that “this is a very sad day for justice” and told Steve Malzberg that Mosby acted out of a “desire to prevent riots.” It will be “virtually impossible,” he predicted, for the six officers involved to get a fair trial.
And as for murder charges, Dershowitz said there’s “no plausible, hypothetical, conceivable case for murder” and “this is a show trial.” He predicted that Mosby might get removed as prosecutor and Baltimore citizens may get upset if and/or when they “move to a place with a different demographic.”
He concluded that it’s “unlikely they’ll get any convictions in this case” and if they do they’ll likely “be reversed on appeal.”
In ordinary circumstances, Dershowitz would be right. But these indictments are not about giving anyone a “fair” trial, or “justice.” The railroad has been built and no judge is going to stand in the way of assuring a conviction for these defendants.
This is about giving the mob what they want. That’s not to say the officer’s are innocent of wrongdoing. But when a prosecutor is motivated by more than simple justice — when personal considerations and politics play a role — the entire system is damaged.