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Monsters In The Making

Macmillan Publishers

When crime surged in 2015 after the Freddie Gray protests, Baltimore police were more determined than ever to rack up more arrests and seize more illegal guns from the streets. A new book, 'I Got A Monster: The Rise and Fall of America's Most Corrupt Police Squad,' chronicles how that empowered cops on the ‘Gun Trace Task Force’--some of whom had been planting evidence, making illegal arrests and robbing drug dealers for years--to step up their own illicit activities. We talk with Brandon Soderberg who co-wrote the book with Baynard Woods. It took a federal indictment to shut down the Gun Trace Task force in 2017. We ask why the authors say prosecutors and police commanders looked away.

On Wednesday, at 7 p.m., Soderberg will discuss the book as part of the Charles Village Learning Place's 2nd Wednesday series, a free virtual event.

On Thursday, on Aug. 20, at 6 p.m. the authors and defense attorney Ivan Bates will be in conversation with Tia Hamilton of Urban Reads Books in a virtual event hosted by the Reginald F. Lewis Museum.  

Photos in conjunction with the book are on view through August 21 at Current Space at 421 N. Howard St., from photographers including Devin Allen,  a video installation that shows two shorts clips from the documentary based on 'I Got A Monster' and police surveillance and surveillance plane footage.

Sheilah Kast is the host of On The Record, Monday-Friday, 9:30-10:00 am.
Melissa Gerr is a Senior Producer for On the Record. She started in public media at Twin Cities Public Television in St. Paul, Minn., where she is from, and then worked as a field producer for Oregon Public Broadcasting in Portland. She made the jump to audio-lover in Baltimore as a digital media editor at Mid-Atlantic Media and Laureate Education, Inc. and as a field producer for "Out of the Blocks." Her beat is typically the off-beat with an emphasis on science, culture and things that make you say, 'Wait, what?'