Baltimore’s deputy state’s attorney, who is prosecuting the six police officers for the in-custody death of Freddie Gray, once represented the victim in an unrelated 2012 criminal case, court documents show Thursday.
The connection was discovered after a new filing by the defense attorneys for the officers charged in Gray’s death, who are concerned that it could be a conflict of interest and yet another reason why Baltimore State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby’s office should recuse itself from the case.
The documents include a letter dated September 11, 2012, from the Office of the Public Defender addressed to Jan Bledsoe, informing her that she had been assigned a case for defendant Freddie Gray, who was being charged with possession of cocaine and marijuana with intent to distribute.
In a statement from the Baltimore City State’s Attorney, communications director Rochelle Ritchie stated, “Unfortunately in Baltimore City, many defendants become victims of crime. Lawyers also change roles within the legal profession. Defending an individual one day does not preclude an attorney from fighting for justice for that same individual the next.”
In addition to this alleged conflict of interest, the defense has filed two motions in the last two days accusing Mosby’s office of “judge shopping” for search warrants as well as engaging in a “systematic effort to intentionally withhold clearly discoverable evidence from the defense,” according to the filing.
Bledsoe, who previously worked in the Baltimore City State’s Attorney’s Office in 2011 and 2012, stood alongside State’s Attorney Mosby in May when she announced charges against the six officers in Gray’s death. Her role in the prosecution has already come into question after it was discovered she is in a relationship with a Baltimore investigative reporter covering the trial.
CORRECTION: An earlier version of this story misstated when the fact that Baltimore’s deputy state’s attorney had worked for Freddie Gray was discovered.