Baltimore police investigating after body cam video shows cop planting evidence

Video published Wednesday shows a Baltimore officer appearing to manipulate evidence

According to the public defender's office, the video was recently flagged which led to the charges against the man arrested and charged for the drugs to be dropped by prosecutors.

The man arrested on drug charges linked to the video, whose name was not released, had been set for trial last week.

When the video begins, the officer drops a baggie of pills into a soup can in a lot covered in garbage. The officer and his two colleagues then walk back out to the street, where he is seen flipping a switch which brings the sound back on.

In the video, it appears that Pinheiro attempts to turn off the camera but only mutes it before he plants the bag of drugs in among a trash pile in a back alleyway.

Baltimore Police Commissioner Kevin Davis told reporters that his department is "looking to see if the officers in fact replaced drugs they had already discovered in order to document the discovery with their body-worn cameras".

In a statement from the public defender, they claim Pinheiro is a witness in 53 active cases.

Police are expected to release more information during a press conference Wednesday.

There's controversy over a Baltimore City police body-camera video and whether it shows an officer tampering with evidence. But it, like the cases of seven officers under federal corruption indictments, and like the incidents depicted in the Department of Justice's 2016 report when Baltimore officers engaged in unconstitutional conduct in the presence of federal investigators, reflects a certain brazenness that comes with a dysfunctional departmental culture.

There is a five-minute gap between the end of that video and the one that shows the officer hiding the bag.

That's what seemed to happen in Baltimore recently, when a police officer appeared to accidentally record himself planting drugs at a crime scene.

On the sidewalk, Pinheiro activates his body-cam - apparently unaware that the device would also preserve his earlier actions.

In an email, the prosecutor says: "I've passed it up and we are all appalled ... something is going to happen because of this revelation".

"(It's) a very serious allegation made by the Public Defender's Office here in Baltimore that Baltimore police officers planted drugs on suspects.

He then finds what appears to be drugs in the can.

The Baltimore Police Department launched an investigation.

According to police policy, officers are required to record all activities that are "investigative or enforcement in nature".

State's Attorney's Office spokeswoman Melba Saunders said the case was under investigation.

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