Details began to emerge this week about how the case against 13 corrections officers and alleged members of a dangerous prison gang at a state-run detention facility will play out in a courtroom in Baltimore.
In a conference call Tuesday with prosecutors and attorneys for the two dozen defendants, including alleged Black Guerilla Family leader Tavon White, a federal judge scheduled a two-month trial for June 2014.
Over the next two months, prosecutors will share with defense attorneys the government’s evidence against their clients, including wiretapped phone calls and any video recordings, according to a summary of the conference filed Wednesday by U.S. District Judge Ellen L. Hollander.
The 13 corrections officers at the state-run Baltimore City Detention Center are accused of helping White run a drug-trafficking and money-laundering operation from behind bars. Prosecutors say White essentially took control of the pretrial facility. Four of the officers allegedly became pregnant with White’s children, and two had his name tattooed on their bodies.
Because of the large number of defendants, Hollander suggested that they be split into two groups, with corrections officers in one group and inmates in another, and that lawyers file joint motions when possible.
Separately, White’s attorney, Gary E. Proctor, is concerned that the conditions of his client’s incarceration “will harm the attorney-client relationship and effective preparation for trial,” according to a court filing this week.
White, who has pleaded not guilty, is being held at the maximum-security North Branch Correctional Facility in Cumberland. Proctor said he was able to meet with White only through a glass wall, making it difficult to review court documents. He has requested a hearing to discuss the terms of White’s incarceration.