Plea Deals Part 1: Trading away justice in Baltimore

Eight officers from the police department’s elite Gun Trace Task Force had for years been robbing people, planting guns and drugs on them and lying on arrest reports to cover up their crimes.

Most of their victims pleaded guilty. It turns out that many, including Burley, were not.

All eight officers from the Baltimore police department’s elite Gun Trace Task Force have been convicted of crimes going on for years — robbing people, planting guns and drugs on them and lying on arrest reports to cover up their crimes. But they had a powerful accomplice yet to be held accountable: the criminal court system that convicted their victims.

Bill would put an armed officer in every school

Determined to pass meaningful legislation in the wake of the Parkland and Great Mills high school shootings, Maryland lawmakers are considering a measure to put an armed school resource officer in every public school. The bill comes as part of a four-bill package being rushed through the General Assembly as session nears end. 

State paying more than appraised for some Purple Line properties

Maryland may be paying more for some properties in the main path of the Purple Line, state officials said, because one transit agency lacks purchasing leverage, and extended negotiations would cause costly delays. “In our enthusiasm and support for the Purple Line we’re getting put over a barrel by some of these landowners. And we are having to pay a lot more than the appraised values,” Comptroller Peter Franchot said at a Feb. 7 Board of Public Works meeting.

Federal tax cuts prompting Maryland tax code revision

New federal tax laws will benefit most Marylanders in the short term and especially help those with children, but are likely to reduce charitable contributions, a comprehensive analysis released Thursday by the state comptroller predicted. Without changes in state law, Maryland taxpayers will pay upward of $572 million more in state and local taxes in the 2019 fiscal year, while their combined federal tax burden would decrease by $2.8 billion, state officials said.

Broken Police Part 4: Views on police differ by neighborhood

In East Baltimore’s, Butchers Hill, neighbors worry about muggings and stolen bikes. A few miles away, in Belair-Edison, residents fear shootings are on the rise. Across town, in Seton Hill, people worry about property theft. Baltimoreans say they are tired of crime. They say they want the police to do something about it, and that they want to be able to trust the officers.