BALTIMORE — Murder charges against 34 people were dropped in the last 19 months because evidence didn't support the charges, a review of Baltimore police records showed.
Some of the dropped cases involved claims of self-defense, later proved to be valid, and two cases involved armed robbers who were slain by their victims, the Baltimore Sun reported Sunday.
In one case, detectives charged a man who died a year before the murder occurred. A witness in the case identified the gunman in a photo lineup, and police said checks of the suspect's arrest record did not show that he had died. Police learned their suspect was dead when they called his sister to find him.
Another man was charged with a West Baltimore shooting that occurred while he was in prison. Two eyewitnesses had picked him from a photo lineup. Police pulled back the arrest warrant when a third witness blamed someone else.
Mayor Martin O'Malley said that the Police Department was working to produce more solid homicide cases.