Report details past year success despite months-long court closures due to global health pandemic
Significant reform efforts underway to reduce mass incarceration and racial disparities in the criminal justice system
Baltimore (April 1, 2021) - The Baltimore City State's Attorney's Office released its 2020 Annual Report. The 44-page document houses a wealth of information on the office's unprecedented response across all of the agency's units to the coronavirus pandemic including policy announcements, work-from-home transition efforts, and virtual community engagements.
"I am humbled and full of gratitude to serve as your State’s Attorney and proudly release our 2020 annual report – a year unlike any other for our city and our nation. This report is a resounding testament of the resolve and resiliency of my dedicated staff who transitioned seamlessly this past year despite unprecedented obstacles and handled 4,284 criminal proceedings, served 8,644 victim and witnesses of crime and hosted 9,734 youth Pop Up participants. This past year required us to adapt to a global health emergency and swiftly act in a responsible and courageous manner to balance public safety and public health. I encourage everyone to read and share this report widely with family, friends and neighbors to learn about our work, because we know community participation is at the core of public safety and this work cannot be done alone,” said State's Attorney Marilyn Mosby.
This past year, the SAO continued to support and serve the community regardless of the limitations imposed by COVID-19 which included the following:
- Secured a Life plus 25-year sentence for the murder of Timothy Moriconi and a 45-year sentence for repeat violent offender, Michael Williams.
- Launched Phase II of the “Together We Are Stronger’ public education campaign and reached more than 10 million viewers and increased victim and witness referrals by 30%.
- Developed decarceral policies to mitigate the spread of the virus behind prison walls which subsequently decreased Baltimore City's prison population by 20%, approximately 3,000 people.
- Directed prosecutors to no-longer authorize "no-knock" warrants, a dangerous police tactic which resulted in the death of Breonna Taylor.
- Created a new Sentencing Review Unit to review cases of incarcerated people to consider early release; this unit handled the release of Maryland's longest-serving female prisoner and two other formerly incarcerated individuals.
- Relocated 153 families.
- Virtually enrolled 58 Junior State's Attorney Participants.
- Secured $7.2M grant dollars.
Legislative victories achieved through dozens of both in-person and then virtual visits to Annapolis during the session and during the interim are highlighted in the report, including the new Jailhouse Informants Law, which requires the State to take specific precautions regarding testimony from jailhouse informants including reporting the information to the Governor’s Office of Crime Prevention, Youth, and Victims Services and disclosing such use to the defendant. In Maryland alone, four innocent people have been proven to have been wrongfully convicted as a result of jailhouse informant's false testimony.
The 2020 Annual Report is available online HERE.