By Van Smith
Published by City Paper, Aug. 8, 2012
Back in 2007, Brian Morris, then Baltimore City’s public schools board president, was impressed by Kevin Foreman. At the board’s Aug. 28, 2007, meeting, Foreman declared that he’d “left the private industry to come back and work . . . to service these children, these gangs, this issue with education, the drop-out rate and what have you” via a group Foreman had started with a former Baltimore City policeman, Trevor Britt. Morris responded, “We do need to find a way to plug you in.”
Earlier that year, Foreman and Britt were listed in incorporation papers as the two directors of Continuous Growth Foundation, Inc., a nonprofit that set out to provide “education, counseling, and mental health services to at-risk and/or disadvantaged youths,” ages 12 to 21. Britt also formed Continuous Growth, LLC, a business that provides “education and reclamation for high school dropouts in addition to counseling services,” according to its incorporation papers.
Four years later, in July 2011, Continuous Growth, LLC was indeed “plugged in” to the school system, having clinched a three-year contract for conflict resolution and extended learning services for city students. But Foreman was in big trouble: On June 16, he had been caught in a U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration sting operation, while trying to close a 10-kilogram cocaine transaction with someone he thought was directly linked to a Mexican drug cartel.
The investigation into Foreman’s drug-dealing activities began in January 2011, according to court records. That’s when one of Foreman’s co-conspirators, David Humphries, introduced him to someone Humphries thought was a Mexican drug-dealer, and Humphries had told the Mexican that Foreman was the “man with all the money.” Foreman told the Mexican that he could handle transporting shipments, as his drug organization “already had vehicles that had concealed compartments”—two of them, with a combined capacity of 30 kilograms. Foreman drove to meet the Mexican in an Audi SUV registered to Continuous Gro, LLC, at 2119 St. Paul St., two blocks south of Foreman’s apartment.
Though Foreman had told the Mexican in January that “he was currently out of cocaine and had many customers waiting,” and that he had enough money to buy 17 kilograms immediately, the deal was delayed until June 16, 2011, when Foreman and another co-conspirator, Andre Carter, went to the Fairfield Inn in White Marsh to meet the Mexican. They shelled out $150,000 for 10 kilograms of cocaine, with the remaining balance of $125,000 to be paid after the coke was sold.
The Mexican turned out to be a DEA confidential source, and Foreman and Carter were immediately arrested after the transaction took place. A search of Foreman’s Charles Village apartment turned up a .45-caliber semi-automatic handgun, 15 rounds of .45-caliber ammunition, a money counter, a digital scale, a kilogram of suspected cocaine, Foreman’s Continuous Growth business card, and a document reflecting that Britt owed money to Foreman’s landlord.
Foreman pleaded guilty, and is now serving a 10-year prison sentence, as is Carter. The two were caught as a result of a joint investigation involving the DEA, the FBI, and the Baltimore City Police Department, that also snared two other major drug-dealing operations, one of which caught former Baltimore City cop Daniel Redd, who is awaiting his sentence on a heroin-conspiracy conviction. Foreman has a prior federal conviction for wire fraud and, in 2004, was sentenced to three years of probation and nearly $40,000 in restitution.
According to David Barney, a publicist representing Continuous Growth, Foreman has a master’s degree in education “as well as years of classroom experience.” In an e-mail, Barney describes Foreman as a “dedicated and passionate professional whose genuine concern for providing support and guidance . . . made him a valuable asset to the organization.”
As for Foreman’s criminal conduct, Barney says Continuous Growth “can’t always be with our employees every minute of every day” and “cannot control what a person might do or has done outside of the organization. Just like the youth we try and reach, we know that we will not change the lives or direction of each and every youth that we look to serve. We can only do our best at providing skills and dedication needed to help bring about a change of habit and direct them in making a conscious decision to adopt new behaviors.”
After Foreman was arrested, Britt tried to convince the federal judge on the case to allow Foreman to keep working at Continuous Growth, though the motion to allow him to do so ultimately was withdrawn.
In a July 22, 2011, e-mail that was submitted as part of the court record, Britt called Foreman “an indelible part of our program,” and that, if allowed to continue working, he would “help the company conduct interviews, perform staff trainings in crisis prevention and intervention, negotiate services with schools, compose manuals concerning protocol as it pertains to services rendered, and solicit new services to principals in the Baltimore City public school system.”
Foreman joins several others in Baltimore who, in recent times, while working to help solve the problems faced by at-risk kids in Baltimore’s streets and schools, were accused and convicted of committing the same kinds of crime they ostensibly sought to prevent. Three men indicted and convicted for their parts in the Black Guerrilla Family (BGF) prison gang—Rainbow Williams, Todd Duncan, and Ronald Scott—were so employed; Williams worked as a mentor for at-risk Baltimore City public school kids through a company called Partners in Progress, while Duncan and Scott were outreach workers for a West Baltimore group called Communities Organized to Improve Life. In addition, BGF leader Eric Brown incorporated Harambee Jamaa, a nonprofit that sought to promote peace and betterment in Baltimore’s poverty- and crime-stricken communities.