How A Corrupt Baltimore Police Task Force Tainted Thousands of Cases (HBO)

Two Baltimore police officers are on trial this week in federal court for some of this worst misconduct imaginable. Detectives Daniel Hersl and Marcus Taylor were members of Baltimore’s Gun Trace Task Force, an elite group of plainclothes officers expected to get the worst firearms and offenders off the city streets. Eight of the nine men on the task force have been accused of a range of organized crime-level charges that range from robbery and extortion, to faking evidence, planting drugs, dealing drugs, and other serious crimes. 6 of the officers, Sergeants Thomas Allers and Wayne Jenkins, and Detectives Momodu Gondo, Evodio Hendrix, Maurice Ward, and Jemell Rayam, have all pleaded guilty.

It’s a staggering fall: the Gun Trace Task Force was created by the city in 2007 with the explicit goal of fighting crime and reducing the city’s rising murder rate. For a while, city leaders saw the task force as a huge success, celebrating the firearms and drugs the men had confiscated. Today, many Baltimore residents consider the task force’s crimes the biggest scandal in recent memory. Freddie Gray’s 2015 death in police custody and the resulting riots dominated years of headlines, but these officers’s misconduct was the low frequency chaos only people in Baltimore’s most vulnerable communities could hear.

In the following bonus clip, Baltimore Sun reporter Justin Fenton speaks with Vice News Correspondent Antonia Hylton about the cultures that allow for police corruption and how Baltimore might heal.

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Emphasis Added: Baltimore & the Death of Freddie Gray

Hosted by VICE News Editor-in-Chief Jason Mojica (https://twitter.com/elmodernisto), our second episode of Emphasis Added examines how the media impacted protests and unrest around the death of Freddie Gray in Baltimore.

Emphasis Added on VICE News brings together a group of journalists, academics and other smart folks to argue about the role the media play in actually affecting the outcome of the stories they cover.

Joining us for this episode:

Marc La Vorgna (​https://twitter.com/lavorgna ): Media Strategist and former Press Secretary to Mayor Bloomberg

Khadijah Costley White (​https://twitter.com/khadastrophic ): Assistant Professor, Rutgers University

David Zurawik (https://twitter.com/davidzurawik ): TV & Media Critic, Baltimore Sun

Dayvon Love (​https://twitter.com/DayvonLove ): Director of Public Policy, Leaders of a Beautiful Struggle

Watch VICE News’ Raw Coverage from the Streets of Baltimore – http://bit.ly/1Fyipdp

Watch “Protesters Demand Police Accountability (Dispatch 2)” – http://bit.ly/1Jf9KeK

Watch “First Night of Baltimore’s Curfew (Dispatch 1)” – http://bit.ly/1AlFZEa

More on Police Shootings in the US: http://bit.ly/1J66Fh2

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Baltimore Reacts to State’s Attorney’s Announcement: Baltimore, Maryland (Dispatch 3)

On Friday morning, the Baltimore State’s Attorney’s office announced that Freddie Gray’s death following his arrest by city police had been deemed a homicide, and that it had issued warrants for the arrest of six officers on various charges related to the murder.

VICE News spoke with residents of Baltimore following the State’s Attorney’s announcement, including Kevin Moore, the man who filmed footage of Freddie Gray’s arrest.

The six Baltimore police officers who have been charged in the death of 25-year-old Freddie Gray turned themselves in on Friday afternoon. They have since posted bond.

Watch “Protesters Demand Police Accountability (Dispatch 2)” – http://bit.ly/1Jf9KeK

Watch “First Night of Baltimore’s Curfew (Dispatch 1)” – http://bit.ly/1AlFZEa

Read “Six Baltimore Police Officers Charged in Freddie Gray’s Death” – http://bit.ly/1JgvDu8

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Raw Coverage from Baltimore

This morning, Baltimore State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby announced that the six officers involved in Freddie Gray’s arrest and subsequent death have received criminal charges. Monica Villamizar reported live from Baltimore.

More on Police Shootings in the US: http://bit.ly/1J66Fh2

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Protesters Demand Police Accountability: State of Emergency – Baltimore, Maryland (Dispatch 2)

VICE News speaks to residents of Baltimore as they wait for an official announcement regarding the investigation into the case of Freddie Gray, the 25-year-old who died from a severed spine while in police custody on April 12.

Protests calling for accountability for Gray’s death have been largely peaceful. Protesters are also calling for police reform — Gray’s is not the first death occurring in the custody of Baltimore police, and the city has paid more than $10 million in compensation and legal fees since 2011 to settle cases of police abuse.

Watch “First Night of Baltimore’s Curfew (Dispatch 1)” – http://bit.ly/1AlFZEa

Read “Baltimore Police Reveal Van Carrying Freddie Gray Made Fourth, Previously Unknown Stop, But Don’t Say Why” – http://bit.ly/1OJi799

Read “A Tale of Two Cities: How Baltimore Reached Its Boiling Point” – http://bit.ly/1Evm3Cy

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First Night of Baltimore’s Curfew: State of Emergency – Baltimore, Maryland (Dispatch 1)

On April 19, Freddie Gray died from injuries he sustained while in the custody of Baltimore police. In the wake of his funeral on April 27, peaceful protests erupted into vandalism and looting across the city. Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake instituted a curfew, effective Tuesday, April 28 at 10pm.

VICE News went to the flashpoint of the protests in west Baltimore during the hour leading up to the curfew.

Watch VICE News’ Raw Coverage from the Streets of Baltimore – http://bit.ly/1Fyipdp

Baltimore Protesters Call for Peace and Justice After Chaotic Night of Riots – http://bit.ly/1bVcBis

Baltimore Gang Members Say Police Allegation They Are Uniting to Kill Officers Is a Lie – http://bit.ly/1QKXbgx

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Raw Coverage from the Streets of Baltimore

WATCH LIVE & READ MORE: http://bit.ly/1EgYnSt
Hours after a funeral was held for Freddie Gray on Monday following his April 19 death in police custody, demonstrations began escalating into violence in the streets on Baltimore. Monica Villamizar and David Enders were reporting live on location for VICE News.

More on Police Shootings in the US: http://bit.ly/1J66Fh2

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