The Baltimore Year in Scandal

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If you’re the kind of person who enjoys juicy stories full of scandal and people behaving badly, then you probably loved 2014. The rest of us just gritted our teeth and tried to get through it.

Here are Baltimore Fishbowl’s picks for the most scandalous stories of 2014, presented in no particular order:

Ray Rice. This fall, the Ravens’ running back, once one of the team’s most beloved players, was caught on video dragging his unconscious fiancee out of an elevator. Then things got a lot worse, as you probably remember. The elevator incident spawned all sorts of smaller sub-scandals, including questions about whether the NFL gave Janay Rice a script encouraging her to apologize, and how much NFL and Ravens officials knew and when they knew it. By the end of the year, Rice was making the contrition rounds and exploring how to re-start his football career.

Molly Shattuck.  The former Ravens cheerleader and Roland Park socialite was indicted on charges of having a sexual relationship with a minor, inspiring her very own neologism (Shattuckfreude!) and some very troubling, very important discussions of sex, image, and rumormongering.

Doped-up athletes. In the past several months, our favorite Oriole and a crucial Raven both got suspended for unauthorized drug use… of Adderall. C’mon guys! Chris Davis, at least, has gotten league approval to keep taking the ADHD drug next season, however.

Michael Phelps’ DUI.  After gambling at Baltimore’s brand-new Horseshoe Casino, a drunk Michael Phelps drove way too fast through the Fort McHenry tunnel. This truly stupid action snagged him his second DUI, a stint in rehab, a suspension from USA Swimming–but no jail time, natch.

Baltimore jail corruption. Okay, so the bulk of the scandalous actions at the Baltimore City Detention Center happened before 2014, including inmates getting guards pregnant, rampant corruption, and serious gang activity. But the story has legs, with new developments (including an amazing, thorough New Yorker story on the scandal) taking place this year.

Towson’s voyeur rabbi. Rabbi Barry Freundel didn’t just allegedly sneakily spy on naked women, he sneakily spied on his students… while they were engaged in a religious ritual. That’s pretty darn low. Freundel has since been suspended from his academic work at both Towson and Georgetown; the case is still developing.


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