Baltimore State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby once said city prosecutors had “the toughest job in America,” a job made increasingly difficult when delivering justice means overhauling a system many feel is broken.
Since taking the helm at the city prosecutor’s office in 2015, just months before Freddie Gray died from spinal injuries he suffered in the back of a police van, Mosby has preached reform while hopping from one firestorm to the next, it seems. Now, amid her second reelection campaign and months before the June primary, she faces criminal charges her attorney says are politically and racially driven.
A federal grand jury indicted Baltimore’s top prosecutor this week on two counts of perjury and two counts of making false statements on loan applications for two Florida vacation homes, according to court documents. Mosby, the indictment alleges, applied for loans against her retirement account, allegedly tapping a CARES Act provision for those hurt financially by the Covid-19 pandemic.
Mosby indicated she had suffered “adverse financial consequences,” despite her quarter-million-dollar 2020 salary, and failed to disclose she owed $45,000 in federal back taxes, according to the indictment. She also allegedly said she would be the primary resident at one of the homes in order to secure a lower rate when she had already entered into an agreement with a rental management firm, the indictment says. She sold one of the homes for a $150,000 profit, The Baltimore Sun reported.
A spokeswoman for the state’s attorney’s office and Mosby’s attorney did not immediately respond to an interview request. The spokeswoman sent a statement to CNN affiliate WBAL saying prosecutors “will not be distracted or sidetracked from our mission to make Baltimore a safer community.”
Attorney A. Scott Bolden issued a statement calling the charges “bogus” and his client innocent. Mosby never lied in relation to the allegations, the statement said, and the US Attorney’s Office for Maryland refused requests to meet with Bolden’s team and to inform Bolden if “evidence of Ms. Mosby’s innocence that we provided … was ever presented to the grand jury.”
The statement further accused the federal prosecutor of conspiring with the Justice Department’s tax division to “wrongfully indict” his client, and alleged federal law enforcement offices were interested only in “bringing false charges against my client – at all or any costs.” The charges “are rooted in personal, political and racial animus five months from her election,” Bolden wrote.
US Attorney Erek Barron, who like Mosby is African American, declined to comment, saying through a spokeswoman the indictment speaks for itself.
In a Friday afternoon news conference, Mosby declined to take questions, saying Bolden would address the media later, but she insisted she’s being targeted politically and vowed to fight as she’s done throughout her tenure.
Freddie Gray threw her into the spotlight
Before becoming state’s attorney, Mosby graduated from Tuskegee University and Boston College Law School. During her studies at the latter, the Boston native worked in her hometown Suffolk County District Attorney’s Office and in two US attorneys’ offices.
After graduation, she prosecuted felonies in the Baltimore State’s Attorney’s Office from 2006 to 2011 before entering the corporate realm as a civil litigator. She decided in the summer of 2013 to run for the Baltimore state’s attorney post. She won and took office in January 2015.