Baltimore Cop Accidentally Recorded Himself Planting Drugs, Public Defender Says

The Baltimore Police Department has suspended an officer after a short video that appears to show him planting drugs in a trash-strewn yard went viral Wednesday.

The 90-second video was recorded on Officer Richard Pinheiro’s body camera, according to the Maryland public defender’s office. The footage, from Jan. 24, shows Pinheiro placing a plastic bag into a red can and hiding it among the trash as two other officers watch him. All three officers then walk down an alley and onto a sidewalk, where Pinheiro turns on his body camera, which is designed to automatically record the 30 seconds of video (without sound) prior to activation.

Once the camera is activated, Pinheiro can be heard saying, “I’m going to check here,” before walking back to the yard. Pinheiro retrieves the plastic bag from the red can and calls out to the other two officers.

The state attorney’s office dismissed the case against the drug suspect after an assistant public defender, who represented the man, forwarded them the video last week, according to a news release from the city’s public defender’s office.

The suspect had been in jail since January in lieu of $50,000 bail he could not pay, The Baltimore Sun reported.


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