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The Honorable Donnell Wilfred Turner is an esteemed jurist appointed by the Governor of Maryland, whose legal career spans over three decades. With a background in prosecuting serious criminal cases and promoting police oversight and accountability, Judge Turner brings a wealth of experience and a passion for public service to his role on the bench.

On September 1, 2022, the Governor of Maryland appointed Judge Donnell W. Turner
to be an Associate Judge of Prince George’s County Circuit Court. Prior to his appointment, Judge Turner was vetted by more than a dozen bar associations from Prince George’s County and around Maryland. Since taking the bench, Judge Turner
has presided over a variety of serious criminal, civil, and family law cases. In addition to his regular duties on the bench, Judge Turner currently serves on the Judicial Council’s Equal Justice and Court Access Committees. Judge Turner is a native of
Prince George’s County who attended Prince George’s County Public Schools, including his alma mater, Parkdale High School, in Riverdale. He is also a graduate of the University of Maryland at College Park with a B.S. in Finance, and he obtained
his law degree from the University of Virginia School of Law.


Judge Turner’s legal career spans over 30 years and includes more than 25 years in public service. After spending the first several years of his career practicing labor and employment law, Judge Turner joined the Prince George’s County State’s Attorney’s Office as an Assistant State’s Attorney, where he prosecuted hundreds of felony and misdemeanor cases, including homicides, sexual assaults, robberies, and carjackings. Judge Turner subsequently joined the United States Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia as an Assistant U.S. Attorney, where he investigated and tried felony drug cases, white collar crimes, and various crimes of violence. In addition, while assigned to the Office’s Appellate Division, Judge Turner wrote numerous appellate briefs and argued cases before the District of Columbia Court of Appeals. Afterwards, Judge Turner joined the Criminal Division of the United States Department of Justice (DOJ) as a Trial Attorney, where he handled largescale international drug trafficking, money laundering, and corruption cases. Judge Turner received numerous merit awards while employed with the Department of Justice.


After spending more than a decade at DOJ, Judge Turner returned to the Prince George’s County State’s Attorney’s Office as a Deputy State’s Attorney, and later was promoted to Principal Deputy State’s Attorney. In this capacity, Judge Turner primarily was responsible for the day-to-day operations of an office of over two hundred employees, including one hundred attorneys, and for implementing and steering the policies and long-term goals of the Office. In addition to his administrative duties, Judge Turner continued to prosecute serious criminal cases, including homicides, white collar crimes, and police misconduct cases. Throughout his career as a prosecutor, Judge Turner has tried over one hundred jury trials in the State and in federal courts throughout the country.

From 2018 until his appointment to the bench in 2022, Judge Turner, who understood the importance of police oversight and accountability, accepted the position of Inspector General for the Prince George’s County Police Department. In this role,

Judge Turner was responsible for detecting and preventing waste, fraud, abuse, mismanagement, and misconduct within the Department, as well as identifying and ensuring the use of best practices regarding the Department’s policies and procedures, and the application of fair, constitutional policing in the County.

In July 2020, while continuing to work as Inspector General, Judge Turner was appointed to serve on the Prince George’s County Police Reform Workgroup, established by County Executive Angela Alsobrooks by Executive Order. The Workgroup, which included community advocates, public officials, and a retired judge, was tasked with conducting a comprehensive review of the Police Department’s operations and policies, including hiring, training, and use of force, and making recommendations to the County Executive. The Workgroup completed its mission in 2021. Of the fifty police reform recommendations made by the Workgroup to County Executive Alsobrooks, she adopted forty-six of them.

Later in 2021, while remaining in his position as Inspector General for the Police Department, Judge Turner was appointed as the inaugural Director of the Prince George’s County Office of Integrity, Compliance, and Police Accountability. As
Director, Judge Turner was given primary responsibility for overseeing the operation of several entities that were created by the Maryland Legislature in 2021 to improve police oversight and accountability within law enforcement agencies in every County throughout the State, including the Prince George’s County Police Accountability Board, the Administrative Charging Committee, and the Administrative Hearing Board.

Judge Turner’s commitment to public service also includes currently serving on the Board of Directors of Community Legal Services of Prince George’s County, an organization that is dedicated to providing legal education and access to the courts for
low-income residents in Prince George’s County. In addition, Judge Turner is a former Board member of both the Prince George’s County Bar Association, and the Maryland State’s Attorney’s Association (MSAA). In 2014, as a result of his dedicated work at
MSAA, Judge Turner received the organization’s President’s Award. He also has served on the Maryland State Bar Association’s Judicial Appointments Committee, and the Maryland Attorney Grievance Commission’s Peer Review Committee.


For the past decade, Judge Turner has been a volunteer Coach with the First Tee Junior Golf Program of Greater Washington, D.C. In addition, for over twenty years, he has volunteered as a Judge for various high school and college mock trial and moot
court competitions, and has participated in various other charitable events for youth, including Toys for Tots. From 1998 until 2017, Judge Turner taught as an adjunct professor at Prince George’s Community College, teaching various legal subjects, including contracts, civil law, and legal research and writing. Judge Turner enjoys golf, biking, traveling, and reading. He currently resides in Bowie.

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