UPDATE: Jenkins has pleaded guilty to numerous charges in connection with this case.
Original story below…
A federal grand jury on Thursday indicted a former Baltimore Police Department sergeant from Middle River on charges related to a 2010 arrest in which evidence was allegedly planted inside of a suspect’s vehicle.
Detective Sean Suiter, who was recently killed in the line of duty, was also involved in that arrest.
The Department of Justice says Suiter was set up to find a planted 28 grams of heroin.
Former Sergeant Wayne Earl Jenkins, 37, of Middle River, was the highest-ranking officer out of the seven BPD officers indicted on racketeering charges back in March. Jenkins was charged with additional crimes in July.
Last week, authorities confirmed that Det. Suiter had been scheduled to testify during an investigation of the indicted police officers on the day after he was killed via his own gun in the line of duty on November 15.
In Thursday’s indictment, Jenkins was charged with destruction, alteration, or falsification of records in federal investigations and deprivation of rights under color of law.
The DOJ indictment states that, on April 28, 2010, Jenkins, driving an unmarked Baltimore Police Department vehicle with Officer #2 as his passenger, and Officer #1 (Suiter), who was also driving an unmarked BPD vehicle, engaged in a vehicle pursuit of a car driven by Umar Burley.
At the intersection of Belle Avenue and Gwynn Oak Avenue, Burley, who was driving at a high speed, struck a car entering the intersection. The impact of the collision was so great that the car was pushed onto the front porch of a rowhome on the corner of the intersection. That car was being driven by an elderly man whose wife was a passenger. The elderly driver was trapped in the car after the collision and died later that day.
The indictment alleges there were no drugs in Burley’s car prior to the crash. After the crash, and after Burley and his passenger had been arrested, Jenkins told another office to call a sergeant who was not at the scene because he had the “stuff” in his car.
After emergency medical personnel arrived on the scene, Officer #2 returned to Jenkins who was standing near Burley’s car. At that time, Jenkins told Officer #2 that the “stuff” was in Burley’s car, and that Jenkins was going to send Suiter to the vehicle to find it because Suiter was “clueless,” according to the affidavit.
Det. Suiter later indicated that he had found approximately 28 grams of heroin. The indictment charges that Jenkins knew the heroin in Burley’s car had been planted.
Based on Jenkins’ false police report, Burley and his passenger were charged with, and imprisoned for, federal drug charges for the heroin that had been planted in the vehicle.
Jenkins is presently awaiting trial on January 16, 2018, on criminal racketeering and fraud charges. He now faces an additional sentence of 20 years in prison for the additional charges.