City Cops Cleared Of Kidnapping Charges

Tuesday, May 03, 2011 – John Patti and The Associated Press
Two police officers accused of kidnapping two 15-year-olds in a police van in 2009 have been cleared of those charges.

But a Baltimore jury on Monday found Detectives Tyrone Francis and Milton Smith III guilty of misconduct, a misdemeanor, in the incident.

The third officer charged in the case, Gregory Hellen, will have his fate decided by the judge overseeing the case.

Prosecutors had claimed the three were on a crime suppression detail in West Baltimore on May 4, 2009. In separate incidents, they allegedly picked two 15-year-olds and took them in a police van. They released one in East Baltimore and one in Howard County.

The case was the first tried by Baltimore State’s Attorney Gregg Bernstein since taking office in January.

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