Judge Requires Prosecutor to Provide Witness List to Defense Within 10 Days for Murder Case of Baltimore Police Officer

In an effort to prepare for the trial of accused cop killer Travon Shaw, defense counsel argued on June 24 that the prosecution disclosed over 100 hours of video footage and over 1,000 pages of documents without clarifying the witnesses and experts the State’s Attorney’s Office intends to call to the stand as required by law.

Defense attorney Matthew Connell waived the presence of his client on Friday before Baltimore City Circuit Court Judge Dana M. Middleton during a motion to compel. Shaw, 33, and his co-defendant, Elliot Knox, 32, were arrested in connection to the fatal shooting of Baltimore Police Department Officer Keona Holley last December and another homicide that occurred two hours later.

Both of Shaw’s cases will be tried together.

During the proceedings, Connell raised concerns that the prosecution was not abiding by a Maryland Court Rule that requires the State’s Attorney’s Office to provide its list of witnesses and experts it intends to call in trial within 30 days of counsel or the defendant’s first court appearance. Connell said the list should have been fulfilled in early March.

The prosecution “failed to make good faith efforts in these discovery disputes,” Connell told the judge, and is “interfering” with defense’s preparation for trial.

Connell previously informed Judge Melissa M. Phinn in May that he sent the prosecutor five discovery letters but had not received a witness list. Judge Phinn then told defense counsel to proceed with the necessary litigation to address the issue.

There are approximately 270 names listed throughout discovery in both cases, Connell added, only 34 of which were full names.

Shaw is currently scheduled for reception court on July 22, with little doubts of proceeding to trial on that date.

Connell said he still hopes to try the case before Shaw’s Hick’s date of Oct. 2, which will mark 180 days after counsel or Shaw’s first court appearance.

The prosecutor countered that she has provided the defense with all of the documentation that provides witness and experts’ information; however, Judge Middleton argued that that was not enough.

Citing the aforementioned Maryland Court Rule, Judge Middleton said it was “insufficient and not acceptable” that the prosecution hand over thousands of documents and tell the defense to “figure it out.”

The judge ordered the prosecutor to provide the defense with a list of witness’ names, addresses, phone numbers, and all written witness statements as well as experts’ names, addresses, and the subject matter of consultation within 10 business days.