A Baltimore police officer has been charged with attempted homicide and aggravated assault after allegedly shooting a man in Pennsylvania. The 33-year-old officer was off-duty at the time of the alleged violent crimes, according to news reports. The shooting occurred outside the officer’s home; he apparently lives in another state, even though he works in Maryland.
Reports show that the man was accused of shooting a 34-year-old Baltimore man after an argument at the apartment complex. The victim suffered wounds to his upper torso and arm, causing him to be transported to a Pennsylvania hospital. That man did not fire shots during the altercation. The conflict appears to be limited to personal matters.
This is not the first time that the officer has been in trouble for his role in a shooting. Several years ago, he reportedly shot and killed another Baltimore officer after getting involved at a fight at a strip club. The victim in that case was off-duty. He reportedly rushed from the strip club with brass knuckles on. The victim was hanging out with some of the members of his motorcycle club when the incident occurred.
Although the department was distraught because of the incident, the man was exonerated and has continued to work with the force. He was also sued in two other cases in 2008, though both of those lawsuits were settled. Criminal defendants who have a reputation as loose cannons may face special challenges in court. These defendants may be unfairly judged before the proceedings even begin. Criminal defendants have the right to a fair and unbiased legal proceeding, even if they do have some unfortunate incidents in their past.
Source: The Baltimore Sun, “Off-duty Baltimore officer shoots man in Pennsylvania” Justin George and Justin Fenton, Apr. 29, 2014