Fila given protective custody in jail

May 04, 1994|By Michael James | Michael James,Sun Staff Writer

Susan M. Fila, the Baltimore lawyer charged with plotting to kill her law firm partner, has been placed in protective custody at the Baltimore City Detention Center as a result of a newspaper article identifying her as a drug informant, a corrections official said.

Ms. Fila -- who last week was assaulted at the jail in a fight over a pack of cigarettes -- was moved into a higher-security area of the jail yesterday morning, said LaMont Flanagan, the commissioner the Baltimore City Detention Center.

The reason for taking her out of the general population area was an article in The Sun yesterday that identified Ms. Fila as a drug informant who was working for Baltimore police at the time of the attack on her law partner, Mr. Flanagan said.

"We felt that as a result of the expose, her life could possibly be in danger," Mr. Flanagan said. "We are here to ensure that the inmate population is safe while they are inside these walls."

Ms. Fila has been at the detention center since her arrest April 21.

She is charged with attempting to murder Charles Lamasa, who was stabbed repeatedly April 14 by a woman Ms. Fila allegedly hired to kill him. Mr. Lamasa survived the attack.

Protective custody is separate from the general population area and has increased security.

On Thursday, Ms. Fila was punched in the head by another female inmate after the two argued over cigarettes and a pair of Ms. Fila's pants, Mr. Flanagan said.

Ms. Fila had traded the pants for a pack of cigarettes and apparently had demanded the pants back after smoking the pack, Mr. Flanagan said.

The other inmate, who was not identified, refused and punched Ms. Fila in the head "during a heated exchange," he said. An X-ray showed she was not seriously injured.

Mr. Flanagan said the assault had nothing to do with the decision to move Ms. Fila to protective custody.

"It was simply an interpersonal dispute, very typical except for the fact that the person involved happened to be Ms. Fila," he said.

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