Ousted from office and judged a felon by two juries of her peers, former Baltimore State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby on Thursday walked into the federal courthouse in Greenbelt facing the real prospect of receiving prison time.

In recent weeks, she railed against the case against her and declared that she was wrongfully convicted.

But she walked out at the conclusion of a hearing to cheers from a throng of supporters and declared angels were watching over her after a judge opted against incarceration for her perjury and mortgage fraud convictions.

”This is not over,” Mosby said. “But God was here today, and I know he’s with me. He touched the heart of this judge and has allowed me to go home to my babies.”

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U.S. District Judge Lydia Kay Griggsby sentenced Mosby, 44, to serve one year of home detention as part of a three-year term of supervised probation, and to forfeit a Florida vacation home. Griggsby cited Mosby’s role as a mother of two and her public and personal fall from grace among her reasons for varying from the sentencing guidelines, which had called for a sentence of 12 to 18 months in prison. Prosecutors wanted her to serve 20 months.

The judge said that while Mosby’s conduct displayed “a pattern of dishonesty,” there had already been “important consequences” as a result of the prosecution.

Former Baltimore State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby speaks to reporters after being sentenced to three years of probation, including a year of house arrest, on charges of perjury and fraud on May 23, 2024. (Pamela Wood)

Prosecutors told Griggsby that Mosby had lied to the public about the case and shown no remorse all while undermining the justice system. In recent weeks she had mounted an aggressive media campaign seeking a pardon, in which she proclaimed she had been railroaded by the system.

Josephine Mourning, a supporter of former Baltimore State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby, celebrates as she exits the courthouse, May 23, 2024. Mosby avoided prison time after being convicted of perjury and fraud. (Kylie Cooper)

“Marilyn Mosby does not care about facts. She does not care about the law. She does not care about the truth,” Assistant U.S. Attorney Sean Delaney said.

Griggsby at multiple points in the hearing expressed concern over Mosby’s comments, but in handing down her sentence did not refer to them, nor did she address claims made by supporters that the process had been unfair and targeted.

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Defense attorneys argued that Mosby had already been sufficiently punished through her professional and personal downfall, while supporters painted the prosecution as retribution for her progressive criminal justice policies and part of a pattern of punishment of civil rights leaders who challenge the status quo. An online petition in support of a pardon garnered more than 70,000 signatures.

“Ms. Mosby pursuing a pardon, pursuing an appeal is who Ms. Mosby is,” public defender James Wyda told Griggsby. “Ms. Mosby fights for everyone else’s rights, and she’s fighting for her own.”

Mosby declined to address the court and did not have a visible reaction to the sentence. She could be seen dabbing her eye with a tissue and embraced supporters.

Tears well in Marilyn Mosby’s eyes as supporters cheer her on after her hearing at U.S. District Court in Greenbelt on May 23, 2024. (Kylie Cooper/The Baltimore Banner)

Mosby, a Democrat who served two terms as the city’s top prosecutor from 2015-2023 and lost a reelection bid amid the charges, was found guilty at separate trials of two counts of perjury and one count of making a false statement on a loan application. The convictions relate to her purchase of two luxury vacation homes in Florida.

The sentence calls for Mosby to serve home detention for one year with location monitoring, and to complete 100 hours of community service.

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In a separate proceeding earlier in the day, Griggsby also ordered that she must forfeit a Florida vacation condo she purchased using a $428,000 mortgage that the jury found was fraudulently obtained. Griggsby said she could recoup her down payment of more than $40,000 and an equivalent percentage of proceeds from the sale of the home, which has swelled in value by hundreds of thousands of dollars since its purchase.

Supporters arrived by the busload and filled the courtroom as well as an overflow room. More than a dozen supporters asked Griggsby to show mercy for Mosby, recalling her tireless efforts to reform the criminal justice system in Baltimore. They included family members, former colleagues in the State’s Attorney’s Office, and a man exonerated of murder by her office.

For portions of the hearing, Mosby sat with her head bowed and hands clasped as if in prayer. Her ex-husband, outgoing City Council President Nick Mosby, sat behind her with their teenage daughters sitting on either side of him.

Nick Mosby, the ex-husband of former Baltimore State's Attorney Marilyn Mosby, walks outside U.S. District Court in Greenbelt, May 23, 2024. Marilyn Mosby was being sentenced after being convicted of perjury and fraud related to the purchase of luxury homes in Florida.
Nick Mosby, the ex-husband of former Baltimore State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby, walks outside U.S. District Court in Greenbelt, May 23, 2024. Marilyn Mosby was being sentenced after being convicted of perjury and fraud related to the purchase of luxury homes in Florida. (Kylie Cooper)

In 2020, Mosby twice certified under the penalty of perjury that she had experienced a qualifying “adverse financial consequence” to withdraw a total of $90,000 from a retirement account through a provision in the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act, or CARES Act. A jury determined that she lied.

Mosby then used that money to buy a home in Kissimmee, Florida, and a condominium in Longboat Key, Florida.

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A second jury concluded that she also lied when she submitted a letter to the mortgage company that claimed Nick Mosby had agreed to gift her $5,000 at closing toward the condo.

Defense attorneys argued the case was novel and unusual. They said she was the only public official ever prosecuted in federal court in Maryland “for offenses that have no victim, financial loss or abuse of public office,” Wyda said.

“This is a unique, it seems, unprecedented case. It’s unusual nature alone is a basis for probation,” Wyda said.

Mosby has painted the case as an overzealous prosecution, motivated by racial and political animus. Her progressive policies had upset the status quo, supporters said, and she was targeted to be taken down. Those were arguments Griggsby prevented from being made at trial, saying there was no basis for them.

Mosby took office in 2015 as the youngest top prosecutor of any major U.S. city and set about an agenda of reforming the criminal justice system, said her former Chief Deputy Michael Schatzow.

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“She did not try to burn the system down. ... She tried to change it from within,” Schatzow said. “She was a passionate advocate for meaningful change, focused on fairness, on racial equity and on community trust.”

Within months, Mosby rocketed to national prominence after bringing charges against six officers in the death of Freddie Gray at a time when police killings were sparking outrage but rarely accountability. It’s that prosecution, she and her supporters claim, that put her in the crosshairs of investigators.

“The prosecution of Marilyn Mosby seems intended to send a chilling message to other progressive prosecutors that their careers, their families, and their freedoms can be stripped away if they strive for equality and justice for everybody in the community, not just some,” civil rights attorney Ben Crump told Griggsby in remarks that compared Mosby to Rosa Parks, Afeni Shakur and Angela Davis.

Mosby, in her recent press appearances, painted the charges as payback from former President Donald Trump, though she was indicted during the administration of President Joe Biden, by a U.S. Attorney’s Office led by a Biden appointee. Griggsby, the judge overseeing the case, is also a Biden appointee.

Supporters for Marilyn Mosby gather in a prayer circle outside the courthouse in Greenbelt. (Kylie Cooper / The Baltimore Banner)

Prosecutors railed against Mosby’s mischaracterizations. Mosby said in a national radio interview that she had been placed under a gag order and unable to defend herself, and that the federal government wanted to separate her from her children for 40 years. She said the government tried to portray the case as though she had stolen Paycheck Protection Program loans.

“It’s a lie,” Delaney said of each claim.

Delaney said he believed Mosby pursued truth as the city’s top prosecutor, which made her misstatements “that much more egregious.” He said a message needed to be sent to Mosby because, absent prison time, there was “every reason to believe she would do wrong again.”

While the defense said the case against Mosby was the only of its kind, prosecutors said it was instead simple and straightforward: Mosby committed perjury and mortgage fraud, cases that are charged every day. Delaney said that rather than going after her for her policies, it would be wrong to not pursue the violations found by investigators.

“Surely it cannot be the case that if the highest prosecutor in Baltimore was found to have committed perjury and mortgage fraud, the United States of America should simply look the other way because of her policies,” he said, “and we do not cut them a break because of their politics either.”

Delaney said there was in fact a victim in the case: “The people’s faith in the system of justice, their public officials and the rule of law.”

Pointing to remarks from some of Mosby’s supporters, Delaney said her “persistent and repeated lies” had “real, substantive, deleterious effects on the public perception of the pursuit of justice.”

Griggsby began her sentencing remarks by saying it was “a sad and difficult day,” for Mosby and for Baltimore. She said the charges cast a cloud over her office and her accomplishments. But Griggsby noted there was no victim and that the charges did not involve her official position, and she took heed of her many accomplishments and people she had helped.

After laying low following her convictions, Mosby successfully rallied a wide range of high-level and grassroots support in recent weeks ahead of the sentencing hearing.

The NAACP and more than a dozen other organizations sent a letter to Biden describing the prosecution as a “miscarriage of justice and an example of the last administration’s misuse of authority” and called on him to pardon Mosby.

Crump and more than 50 other lawyers later joined the call. So did the Congressional Black Caucus.

Bernice King, the daughter of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., also released a statement in support of the effort.

Mosby’s pardon application states: “While pardon applications generally express remorse and regret, what happens when justice was not served and in fact, denied?”

Supporters were pleased with Griggsby’s sentence, but remained concerned that the prosecution was unjust.

“Marilyn Mosby was singled out because she dared to stand up against the status quo. Because she dared to challenge white supremacy,” said Kobi Little, president of the Baltimore chapter of the NAACP. “And God has put a hedge around Marilyn and protected her today. But that’s not cause for us to stop the fight. We must challenge institutional racism. We must challenge the blue wall and all that comes with it. We must call for prosecutors to pursue justice, instead of conviction.”

Civil Rights attorney Ben Crump speaks outside U.S. District Court in Greenbelt about former Baltimore State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby’s sentencing on fraud and perjury charges on May 23, 2024. (Kylie Cooper/The Baltimore Banner)

“Do not let them silence you,” Crump said outside of the courthouse. “Do not let them take your voice from you. Do not let them take the fight to make a better America for all of our children.”

Nick Mosby said he was thankful to the court for keeping their daughters with their mother. He said he was “still very perplexed but thankful for where we are right now.”

”I’m proud of Marilyn, the way she’s carried herself this entire time, for years, under a cloud that I think was unfairly targeted,” he said.

After Marilyn Mosby emerged from the courthouse, she had their daughters first address supporters and the media. Their youngest daughter, Aniyah, 13, said she was grateful for everyone who signed the petition calling on Biden to pardon her mother.

Their oldest daughter, Nylyn, 15, said her mother’s fight for justice has inspired her to become a prosecutor.

”Justice for Marilyn Mosby is justice for all of us,” she said.

Baltimore Banner reporter Pamela Wood contributed to this report.