To say that the city of Baltimore, Maryland, has had a string of back luck when it comes to municipal leadership might just be the understatement of the year. I mean, this is a city that out of its last five mayors, only one has left the job on good terms, the rest either resigned due to accusations of scandal or were even arrested for such. And much of City Council, as well as the University of Maryland Medical System, have since been found to be just as corrupt.
Therefore, it’s no surprise that in recent months, more and more of Baltimore’s leadership has been closely inspected and discovered as part of the city’s seemingly never-ending problems.
The latest is Baltimore’s State’s Attorney, Marilyn Mosby. Currently, she is under investigation by the city’s Inspector General for several reasons.
The first of which seems to be a small number of private-sector travel and consulting businesses created by Mosby last year. However, at this point is a bit difficult to tell just what the problem with them is, besides that they were never listed on her ethics report as income, of course. As it turns out, whenever someone has questioned the companies and tried to look into them further, such as when the Baltimore Sun filed a Public Information Act request for any emails on her public and government computer, Mosby has refused to comply.
According to her, public records on her businesses are none of the public’s business, and she won’t have us rifling through her documents.
As the Sun reported, “Baltimore State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby won’t make public emails that mention her private businesses and are stored on her government computer, arguing that they are exempt from disclosure because they are part of an investigation by Baltimore’s inspector general.”
The Sun went to say the Mosby’s office gave three reasons as to why the emails and files wouldn’t be released to the public: “the ongoing investigation; that they weren’t related to state business; and that they “contain information about the finances of an individual.”
In addition, Mosby refused a request for the companies’ financial records, as well as for an interview.
The only information her office seems willing to give out is that these companies were created to allow underserved Black residents to travel and to do so in comfort, but they basically exist “only in name,” according to Mosby’s spokesperson.
However, this only creates more questions – and ones that only add to the idea that there is something rather fishy going on. Questions like, if they exist in name only and are meant to serve the underprivileged of the city, why aren’t they set up as non-profits? And why, if the companies really only exist in name alone, do they have financial records?
Furthermore, why now, when Mosby is at the height of her career in both law enforcement and politics? Baltimore is clearly in the middle of a long-drawn-out war on crime, with literally thousands of cases being backlogged. Mosby has to be up to her ears in case files and clients.
And yet she suddenly has time to start several new travel businesses?
Then again, she is doing a lot of traveling.
According to the Sun, this is another part of the investigation into her. As her reports to the Ethics Commission cite, “she traveled at least 20 times for events over the past two years, including trips abroad to Berlin, Portugal, and Kenya. Most of the travel – which totaled about $30,000 – was paid for by private organizations.”
Could this be why she chose the travel industry to create a few start-ups?
Another question to ask is why Mosby keeps these company records on her government, and therefore not so private, work computer? If they are private, and as she says, none of our business, why not have them on her private home computer?
It would seem to be that if Mosby really wanted to prove that she wasn’t hiding anything or wasn’t breaking the law in any way, she would be all too forthcoming about the companies and precisely what she has been doing with them, especially given the propensity for corruption and crime in Baltimore. If she wants to gain the public’s trust, what better way than revealing all?
Hiding things only makes her look guilty, which at this point, I’d say she most definitely is.