Former Baltimore State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby was found guilty of two counts of perjury on Thursday, a stunning reversal for the city’s two-term top prosecutor, according to The Baltimore Banner. Jurors took seven hours to convict Mosby of lying about experiencing financial difficulties related to the COVID-19 pandemic to withdraw money early from a retirement account to buy two vacation homes in Florida. The defense had argued the pandemic dashed her hopes of operating a side business, which created an eligible hardship under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act, or CARES Act, and that the guidelines for withdrawing the money were vague. However, prosecutors said she suffered no such hardship and was searching for an excuse. The charges each bring a maximum penalty of five years in prison, though actual sentences are typically far less.
Mosby, 43, a Democrat, took office in 2015, becoming one of the youngest top prosecutors in the country and rocketing to national prominence when early in her first term she charged six Baltimore Police officers in the death of Freddie Gray. She was indicted in January 2022 and contended that the charges were brought for politically and racially motivated reasons. At trial, federal prosecutors alleged that Mosby twice lied on a form in 2020 about experiencing an “adverse financial consequence” to take advantage of a provision in the CARES Act to withdraw $90,000 that she otherwise would not have been able to access. She used that money to buy a home as well as a condo in Florida. Mosby certified under penalty of perjury that she had experienced the closure or reduction of hours of a business she owned or operated. The government asserted that Mosby was not furloughed during the pandemic and continued to earn her $250,000 annual salary. “The truth matters. Sometimes, the truth can take work to find,” Assistant U.S. Attorney Sean Delaney said in his closing argument at trial. “The truth is that Marilyn Mosby is guilty of perjury."