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Baltimore City State's Attorney wants to do away with no-knock warrants

Also wants to soften penalties for missing court
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Posted at 7:04 PM, Oct 14, 2020
and last updated 2020-10-15 12:48:53-04

BALTIMORE — The Baltimore City State's Attorney's Office is attempting to steer away from no-knock warrants.

In an email to staff Marilyn Mosby cites recent events, such as the killing of Breonna Taylor, "have shown that the ends do not justify the means."

Baltimore City FOP responded to the policy change on Wednesday via Twitter, saying in part that there is a time and place for these warrants in law enforcement and that a judge should be the only one who decides whether a no-knock warrant is warranted..

"Today the Baltimore City State's Attorney issued a blanket prohibition in regard to no-knock warrants, to subordinate attorneys in her office," the tweet said. "This action is completely irresponsible and an overreach, though predictable."

Ultimately the law allows only a judge not the state's attorney the power to approve a "no knock" warrant.

Several states across the country prohibit no-knock warrants, including Oregon and Florida.

Additionally, Mosby has ordered her staff to not seek warrants for criminal defendants failing to appear in court for their cases.

Mosby wants her attorneys to first make sure the defendant isn't already incarcerated and was actually hand delivered a summons or physically notified of their scheduled date in court.

She wants only those accused of felonies or domestic violence to be issued warrants and all others re-issued a summons.

Again, only a judge determines whether a warrant or summons is issued, the State's Attorney's Office can legally only make a request or recommendation to a judge.