Baltimore’s former top prosecutor has trial delayed after her entire defense team quits
Former Baltimore City State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby’s trial for federal perjury and mortgage fraud has been delayed yet again after her entire defense team quit.
Mosby is accused of receiving her full salary of $247,955.58 in 2020, the same year she withdrew $90,000 from her retirement accounts after claiming financial hardship during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Mosby’s former lead defense attorney, A. Scott Bolden, quit last month after U.S. District Court Judge Lydia Kay Griggsby threatened to hold him in contempt of court. The rest of her defense team requested to be dismissed shortly after.
The trial is now slated for November 2, with jury selection starting October 31. If convicted, Mosby faces up to five years in prison for perjury and up to 30 years in prison for making false mortgage applications.
The trial for former Baltimore City State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby has been delayed yet again after her entire defense team quit last month. Pictured: Mosby speaks during a news conference pertaining to a case against Adnan Syed on Oct. 11, 2022
Mosby’s former lead defense attorney, A. Scott Bolden, quit last month after U.S. District Court Judge Lydia Kay Griggsby threatened to hold him in contempt of court
The judge accused lead attorney Bolden of violating several court rules, including using profanity in inflammatory statements to the media on the courthouse steps following an earlier hearing.
Shortly after, Mosby’s entire team of six private defense lawyers asked to withdraw from the case. Griggsby allowed the team to do so, declared Mosby indigent and appointed a public defender to represent her moving forward.
A different federal judge said last week that Bolden’s rule violations, ‘in addition to his theatrics and profanity,’ went against the court’s ‘traditions of civility and collegiality.’
But his inappropriate conduct didn’t warrant criminal contempt sanctions, according to a February 21 order issued by U.S. District Judge Richard D. Bennett. That case was dismissed.
Mosby’s trial date has now been pushed back again to give her new attorney time to get up to speed. It had been scheduled to start April 2023 after being pushed back from its original date in May 2022 to September 2022.
This is the trial’s third postponement, making an already prolonged legal battle even longer for Mosby, who left office in January after serving two high-profile terms as Baltimore state’s attorney.
Mosby was defeated in a Democratic primary last year by Ivan Bates after federal prosecutors accused her of lying about experiencing financial hardship during the COVID-19 pandemic in order to make early withdrawals from her retirement account.
They say she used the money to buy two Florida vacation properties, a $913,000 home in Kissimmee and a $732,000 condo in LongBoat Key.
Prosecutors said Mosby falsely claimed she was facing COVID-related financial troubles to use her city retirement fund to help her buy a property in Kissimmee. She was also accused of claiming this home was a second residence in order to get a lower interest rate
Pictured: The $732,000 Longboat Key, Florida, condo Mosby purchased
Mosby has denied any wrongdoing over the purchases and claimed that the charges she faces were all part of a ‘racist witch hunt’ targeting the woke DA
Mosby’s previous defense team argued that the pandemic had an impact on both financial markets and her personal travel and consulting businesses.
They have also repeatedly accused prosecutors of having racial or political motives for pursuing the case, though Griggsby previously rejected their assertion of vindictive prosecution.
While serving two high-profile terms in the role, which included attempting to prosecute multiple officers in the 2015 death of Freddie Gray, a Black man who died in police custody.
She was in office when prosecutors dropped charges against Adnan Syed on in the 1999 killing of Hae Min Lee after additional DNA testing excluded him as a suspect in a case chronicled by the hit podcast ‘Serial.’
Prosecutors dropped charges against Adnan Syed in October for the 1999 killing of Hae Min Lee, a case that was chronicled in the hit podcast ‘Serial’
Syed spent more than two decades behind bars after he was convicted of killing Hae Min Lee, a former girlfriend seen with him above in a high school photo
Marilyn Mosby, the state’s attorney for the city of Baltimore, said that DNA not available at the time of the murder revealed genetic material on Lee’s shoes that did not match Syed
Mosby said at the time that her office would continue to pursue justice for Lee but that it had closed its case against Syed, who spent 23 years in prison for the killing. She said the decision was made after additional DNA testing excluded Syed as a suspect in the strangulation of Lee, whom Syed had dated.
She said her office decided to drop the charges after receiving the results of DNA testing on Lee’s skirt, pantyhose, jacket and shoes that was conducted using a more modern technique than when evidence in the case was first tested. Although no DNA was recovered from the skirt, pantyhose or jacket, some was recovered from Lee’s shoes, ‘and most compellingly, Adnan Syed, his DNA was excluded,’ she said.
Mosby said that even though her administration wasn’t responsible for the pain inflicted on Hae Min Lee’s family or the wrongful conviction of Syed, ‘as a representative of the institution, it is my responsibility to acknowledge and to apologize to the family of Hae Min Lee and Adnan Syed.’
Last year, Mosby lost her reelection bid in the Democratic primary and conceded to Ivan Bates after she was charged in federal court
Bates (above) became the city’s new DA after he vowed to curb rising crime rates
Mosby also controversially directed her office to stop prosecuting quality-of-life crimes like drug possession and prostitution at the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic, arguing that it was necessary to reduce the chance of outbreaks in jails and prisons.
She condemned the allegations as a ‘racist witch hunt’ and filed for the case to be thrown out, accusing federal prosecutors of having a personal vendetta against her, claiming one of the legal eagles even spread rumors she cheated on her husband.