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Marilyn and Nick Mosby

Crime & Justiceby Mark Reutter9:24 amMay 22, 20240

On the eve of Marilyn Mosby’s criminal sentencing, fact checking her claims of a “witch hunt”

After charges prompted by an investigation she requested and ending with two jury convictions in a venue of her choosing, Baltimore’s former state’s attorney still claims she is the victim of a racist and biased prosecution.

Above: Marilyn Mosby has mounted a pre-sentencing social media blitz, using for its website her photo from a 2015 Vogue magazine profile, shot at her former state’s attorney’s office in Baltimore. (justiceformarilynmosby.com)

Launching a blistering multi-media attack against prosecutors ahead of her sentencing hearing tomorrow, while simultaneously demanding a full pardon from President Joe Biden, Marilyn Mosby says she is the victim of the same criminal justice system she was trying to reform.

“I’ve been targeted as a result of my attempts to balance the scales of justice. There is no other reason,” she declared during a recent appearance on The Breakfast Club podcast, claiming she now faces decades in prison for “withdrawing funds from my own retirement savings.”

Baltimore’s former two-term state’s attorney said she was caught in the crosshairs of a vengeful Donald Trump and the racial profiling of William Barr’s Department of Justice because she had dared to indict (though failed to convict) six Baltimore police officers involved the 2015 death of Freddie Grey.

“I knew people were going to come for me. I just didn’t think they [would] use this system against me in a way in which I would be wrongly convicted and face the same sort of reality as all those exonerees,” she explained on the May 8 podcast, alluding to Black men falsely jailed in Baltimore.

Now, she tells listeners, she could get “up to 40 years in federal prison” from U.S. District Court Judge Lydia Kay Griggsby, who former CNN commentator Angela Rye describes as incompetent.

“She was not prepared,” Rye declared in a joint appearance with Mosby on the same podcast. “The judge who ruled against her defense team mostly on every motion and mostly on every objection is responsible for her sentencing.”

Biden “owes” Mosby a pardon because “she stumped for them [Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris]” and “all black female prosecutors are under attack,” Rye added.

In her application for a presidential pardon, Mosby is equally defiant, writing:

“While pardon applications generally express remorse and regret, what happens when justice was not served and, in fact, denied? No such remorse and regret is appropriate in this case.”

“Found guilty, which is unbelievable, for taking my own retirement savings!” Marilyn Mosby exclaims on the May 9 Native Land Podcast. BELOW: Appearing with Al Sharpton on MSNBC. (YouTube)

Marilyn Mosby on Politics Nation Al Sharptonjpg

Looking at the Timeline

How does this narrative of racial profiling through trumped-up charges, amplified by media influencers like MSNBC’s Joy Reid and Al Sharpton and petitioners like the NAACP and Congressional Black Caucus, square with the facts?

Here are some key things to remember:

• Mosby was first investigated in 2020 by Isabel Mercedes Cumming, Baltimore’s first female Hispanic inspector general, who found questionable tax deductions as well as 15 Mosby trips, some overseas, not authorized by the Board of Estimates.

After submitting her administrative report, Cumming turned over evidence of possible criminal violations to the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

• Mosby was indicted by federal prosecutors in January 2022 – or a year after the Trump presidency ended – for perjury and mortgage fraud. The indictment was signed by Erek L. Barron, the first Black U.S. Attorney for Maryland and a Joe Biden appointee.

“No remorse and regret is appropriate in this case”  – Marilyn Mosby.

• Mosby was charged not with “withdrawing funds from my own retirement funds,” but for certifying under penalty of perjury that she had experienced adverse financial consequences stemming from the Covid pandemic in 2020 when, in fact, her yearly salary as state’s attorney had increased from $238,772 to $247,955.

The certification of adverse financial conditions allowed her to obtain $40,000, otherwise not accessible, that she used to buy a vacation home in Kissimmee, Florida.

• Mosby was tried before Lydia Kay Griggsby, the first Black female U.S. District Court judge in Maryland, also a Biden appointee.

Griggsby granted Mosby a host of breaks, including delaying the trial twice, granting Mosby a team of public defenders when she said she could no longer afford private attorneys, changing the trial venue from Baltimore to Greenbelt owing to Mosby’s complaint of “adverse publicity,” and separating the government’s charges into two jury trials. Griggsby ruled favorably on many of the defense’s procedural objections.

• On the stand, Mosby blamed her ex-husband, City Council President Nick Mosby, for her problems. He lied to her about their finances, she testified, and failed to pay a $45,000 tax lien that she did not disclose on her mortgage application forms because he had told her he had paid it.

“They didn’t charge him,” she said on the Breakfast Club podcast, referring to federal prosecutors. “They didn’t want him. They wanted me.”

• Despite the changed venue, Mosby was convicted last November of two counts of perjury and in February of mortgage fraud, in both cases by majority non-white juries.

• The 40 years in prison that Mosby cites in interviews and on her justice website is the highest possible number derived from adding the maximum sentences for each of her three convictions.

U.S. Sentencing Commission guidelines call for a maximum of 24 months. Barron’s office has asked for less – 20 months – at what would be a minimum-security female prison with residential dorms and no armed guards, such as at Alderson, W.Va., which hosted Martha Stewart.

U.S. Attorney Erek Barron and U.S. District Court Judge Lydia Kay Griggsby.

U.S. Attorney Erek Barron and U.S. District Court Judge Lydia Kay Griggsby have been denounced by Mosby surrogates as biased and incompetent.

What She Asked For

Also notable, amid Mosby’s claims of a “federal witch hunt,” is the identity of the person who requested the investigation that led to the prosecution.

It was Marilyn Mosby herself, Baltimore Inspector General Cumming pointed out on Monday on X.

For the next six months, it was Mosby who denounced the inspector general for not writing an exculpatory report, who marshaled her political and civil rights allies to attack Cumming as “racist,” and who virtually dared the feds to investigate her private financial transactions.

The charges that Mosby was ultimately convicted of arose from the crucible of events in 2020 and early 2021, which, Cumming told The Brew, had nothing to do with national politics.

Isabel Cumming tweet on Mosby investigation

Angered by News Story

Instead, Mosby demanded the investigation after a July 16, 2020 Brew story, “The Peripatetic Prosecutor,” documented her cumulative three months of absence from the state’s attorney’s office during a period of rising crime and violence in Baltimore.

The story also revealed the existence of three limited liability companies that Mosby had formed not long after winning a second term as state’s attorney.

In a written response to Brew questions, spokesperson Zy Richardson said Mosby had formed the companies “to help underserved Black families who don’t usually have the opportunity to travel outside of urban cities [to] vacation at various destinations throughout the world at discount prices.”

Richardson said the Mahogany LLCs had no clients. “She has not received a single cent in revenue” and “there are no plans to operate the company while she is state’s attorney.”

The Peripatetic Prosecutor Marilyn Mosby

Four days after the story appeared, Mosby publicly demanded that IG Cumming investigate “my travel and financial disclosures,” saying that she was confident she would be fully exonerated.

In a letter to Cumming, attorneys David J. Shuster and Andrew Graham stressed that Mosby was willing to make bank accounts, travel receipts and other financial information available to Cumming in anticipation that her report would “demonstrate the inaccuracy of stories by certain media outlets and put the matter to rest.”

Instead, on February 9, 2021, Cumming released a report that revealed that at least 15 of the 24 sponsored trips made by Mosby were not submitted to the Board of Estimates, as required.

Even though the Mahogany Elite companies did not generate any revenue, Cumming found that Mosby had written off $7,650 in tax deductions, including plane and car trips with her husband and children.

Seeking exoneration Marilyn Mosby instead gets a highly critical report from Baltimore’s IG


Mosby and her attorneys exploded, demanding that the report be rewritten or retracted, in part because Cumming did not submit it to Mosby for prior review.

Soon the president of the Baltimore chapter of the NAACP was leading a protest in front of City Hall – or rather trying to. They were competing for space with a group of strippers who had commandeered the area, demanding that the city reopen their Covid-closed places of employment.

The pro-Mosby group demanded “equity in investigations” by the inspector general, apparently not realizing that Mosby had requested the investigation they were attacking.

Meanwhile, Nick Mosby, president of the City Council, discovered that an advisory board overseeing Cumming’s office was not active and worked out a deal with Mayor Brandon Scott for City Solicitor James Shea to convene hearings on the scope of the inspector general’s work.

Shea also ruled that the Board of Estimates’ travel rules were too ambiguous to fault the state’s attorney for failing to request BOE permission for her overseas trips and other absences.

In a forerunner of today’s choir of Mosby advocates, Nick Mosby declared victory over “misrepresentative headlines and attacks.”

“Of course, the Baltimore solicitor found no fault with my wife, Marilyn Mosby. She has done nothing illegal, nothing immoral and nothing nefarious,” he told supporters before asking: “Will you make a donation today and help my wife raise the resources she needs to fight back?”

Strippers protest outside Baltimore City Hall, caliing for Mayor Brandon Scott to reopen strip clubs. (Louis Krauss)

Strippers crowd out the NAACP’s demonstration in support of Marilyn Mosby on February 24, 2021. BELOW: Nick Mosby declares  that his wife had been “officially vindicated” by the city solicitor. (Louis Krauss)


But the couple’s troubles were just beginning.

In March 2021, FBI and IRS agents served subpoenas at their Reservoir Hill home and at Nick Mosby’s office at City Hall (in 2019, the feds raided the building to obtain evidence in the “Healthy Holly” children books’ scandal that led to Mayor Catherine Pugh’s resignation and prison sentence for conspiracy and tax evasion).

Led by Assistant U.S. Attorney Leo Wise, who had just come off the successful prosecution of members of Baltimore’s corrupt Gun Trace Task Force, the investigation gathered financial documents pertaining to Marilyn’s three LLCs, a company called Monumental Squared formed by Nick, and the couple’s campaign, tax and bank records.

While supporters publicly complained of a witch hunt, the feds quietly amassed a criminal case that centered on Marilyn Mosby’s withdrawal of her city retirement funds during the Covid pandemic to buy two vacation homes in Florida.

A grand jury indictment was issued on January 13, 2022.

Twenty-five months later, on February 6, 2024, her trials were over, and Mosby stood guilty of two counts of perjury and one count of mortgage fraud.

Robyn Murphy (left) sits at a luncheon last October with Baltimore NAACP President Kobi Little, attorney A. Scott Bolden, Devon Brown, Marilyn and Nick Mosby, attorney Ben Crump and attorney J. Wyndal Gordon before a press conference where federal prosecutors were denounced as racially targeting the Mosbys. (Facebook)

Marilyn and Nick Mosby surrounded by supporters in October 2021, including national civil rights attorney Ben Crump. The group hosted a press conference, denouncing the U.S. Attorney’s Office for racially targeting the Mosbys three months before Marilyn Mosby was indicted. (Facebook)

Political Clout v. Contrition

Over the last month, Mosby’s media blitz has placed a lot of pressure on Judge Griggsby.

A sentencing judge is supposed to weigh the question of incarceration based on the nature and circumstances of the offense, whether the punishment reflects the seriousness of the crime, whether it promotes respect for the law and is consistent with U.S. Sentencing Commission guidelines.

But in interviews and written statements, Mosby openly rejects the fairness of her trials and the legitimacy of her convictions.

She is banking on political pressure coming from outside the courtroom, rather than expressions of contrition and remorse expressed within, as her best strategy for a “get out of jail free” card.


The “Justice for Marilyn Mosby” website includes a donation button and social media tool kit.


Her indignant and unrepentant stance is held up by U.S. Attorney Barron and his staff as a reason for a stiff sentence.

“Ms. Mosby’s convictions appear to have in no way caused her to believe that she did anything wrong,” they wrote in a sentencing memorandum.

“In fact, it appears from her continued public comments the Defendant believes that she has been targeted for her crimes and does not accept responsibility for her actions. If she believes she did no wrong, there is every reason to believe she will do wrong again.”

Meanwhile, Mosby’s defense attorney, James Wyda, has been careful in his sentencing memo to describe his client as (more or less) contrite.

“Ms. Mosby accepts the Court’s findings that there has been no vindictive or selective prosecution” and “acknowledges she should have – and wishes she had – acted differently,” says Wyda, who is angling for probation and no prison time for his client.

What Griggsby decides tomorrow in a Greenbelt courtroom – and how Baltimore’s former top prosecutor reacts – is anyone’s guess.

FULL Brew Coverage of Marilyn and Nick Mosby.

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