SAO to publicly post 'use of force' investigation case summaries online
BALTIMORE (WBFF) – Under a new policy adopted by Baltimore City State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby, her office will publicly post “use of force” investigation case summaries online any time a Baltimore police officer is suspected of criminally assaulting or killing a person in Baltimore City.
“At the start of my administration, I promised to make the Office of the State’s Attorney for Baltimore City a more open, accessible, and transparent public safety agency,” said State’s Attorney Mosby. “Over the past two years, we have worked toward that goal, seeking out national best practices with the citizens and communities of Baltimore City at the forefront of our minds. Today, we are delivering on that promise in a major way by posting information about individual ‘use of force’ investigations online.”
According to the State’s Attorney’s Office (SAO), the policy comes out of recommendations from the Association of Prosecuting Attorneys' (APA) “Use of Force Project.”
APA established the Use of Force Project last year.
For cases where the officers are not charged, the case summaries posted online will provide supporting evidence and documentation for the declination to charge. For cases where investigators choose to bring charges, the legal process would move forward.
The Baltimore SAO is one of 50 district and state’s attorneys’ offices around the country adopting the recommendations set forth by the APA’s “Use of Force Project.”
“To improve the criminal justice system, we have to make holistic changes,” said Deputy State’s Attorney Janice Bledsoe, who oversees the SAO’s Police Integrity and Police Trust Unit. “We must recognize and respond to the public’s right to know what happened when a resident is harmed or killed by law enforcement.”
The summaries of Baltimore cases will be posted here: http://www.stattorney.org/#pois.
“This is what the public needs in order to rebuild its faith in the criminal justice system,” continued State’s Attorney Mosby. “I’m glad to have the support and partnership of some of the most progressive prosecutorial minds in the country on this initiative.”