Baltimore Starts New Unit To Convict Violent Gun Offenders

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Baltimore’s two top law enforcement officials are assembling a team of “elite” prosecutors and police detectives to secure convictions against violent gun offenders, the Baltimore Sun reports. What is being called the Gun Violence Enforcement Division, to be housed in the office of State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby, could involve as many as 13 prosecutors. Police Commissioner Kevin Davis said the police department will contribute at least one sergeant and four detectives, all of whom have specialized training and experience with gun violence.

Authorities have created similar partnerships in the past, but Mosby said the new team will have the added benefit of intelligence gathered in the last year — including a list of 602 identified “trigger pullers” — to target specific individuals. It will be organized to mirror the EXILE program used by federal prosecutors. That program aims to attach long prison sentences to gun crimes. Mosby said the unit would have one responsibility: “to ensure the aggregation of intelligence that’s extracted from my criminal strategies unit and the Baltimore Police Department is used to not only apprehend and charge, but to convict those who are administering gun violence in the city.” The unit is the latest initiative to be introduced in the last several years under multiple state’s attorneys and police commissioners, and it remains to be seen just how different it will be from past collaborations.

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