In response to a motion filed by a group of Baltimore news organizations, Baltimore State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby has agreed that one sealed record in her federal criminal case should be opened to the public, but still wants to keep another record shielded.
Mosby on Thursday argued that one filing should remain sealed because “certain submissions related to pretrial administrative matters (like those discussed in the document in question) are expressly required to remain under seal as a matter of law.”
Mosby’s attorneys wrote that the public’s right to access criminal proceedings can, under certain circumstances, be overcome by a defendant’s right to a fair trial.
Further details about the document are not available because Mosby’s motion to seal that record was itself filed under seal, making it impossible for the public to see more detailed reasons for her request to keep the document shielded. The motion to seal and the document itself were filed on April 4.
Mosby did agree, however, that an earlier document filed under seal could be opened. The sealed document includes four exhibits that were attached to a motion for a status conference that Mosby filed in late March.
“When Ms. Mosby originally filed those exhibits under seal, she did so in an abundance of caution because the government’s covering letter (one of the exhibits) contained references to certain discovery materials, including individuals’ names,” Mosby’s attorney, A. Scott Bolden, wrote in the response.
The Daily Record, The Baltimore Sun and The Baltimore Banner on April 28 filed a motion to unseal records in the case, arguing that the widespread interest in the case and the public’s right to access criminal proceedings favored making the documents available.
U.S. District Judge Lydia Kay Griggsby ordered Mosby to respond by May 12. As of May 16, Griggsby has not yet ruled on Mosby’s request to keep one case record sealed, nor has she opened the records for which the motion to unseal was uncontested.
Mosby faces two counts each of perjury and making false statements on loan applications. The indictment alleges that Mosby falsely claimed she suffered financially during the COVID-19 pandemic in order to withdraw money from her city retirement account.
She is also accused of failing to disclose a $45,000 IRS lien when she applied for mortgages on two properties in Florida, and of making various false statements in order to secure favorable interest rates.
Mosby has pleaded not guilty and is set to face trial in September.