Baltimore City State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby announced that the six officers involved in the death of Freddie Gray will face charges. The news comes after the medical examiner ruled Gray’s death a homicide.
Baltimore residents cheered after learning the news believing it to be the first step in search of justice. However, it is not sure what will happen next as officers involved in similar situations whose victim’s deaths were ruled a homicide were exonerated. Both officers Wilson of Ferguson, MI and Pantaleo of the NYPD were not charged despite the deaths of Michael Brown and Eric Garner being ruled a homicide.
Gray died from complications after suffering a severe and critical neck injury. He was handcuffed and shackled, however, he was not properly restrained with a seat belt in the police van. Some officers and the union claimed that Gray caused his own death by slamming himself to a wall partition, however, there is no evidence of this. Gene Ryan of the police union immediately voiced his protest at the charges against the six officers and has asked Attorny Mosby to recuse herself. His union had set up a gofundme page to raise $600,000 for the officer’s legal fees, but the page was removed because gofundme has a policy that does not allow fundraising campaigns for anyone charged with a serious crime.
The officers face charges such as second-degree assault and involuntary manslaughter that could bring more than 10 years in prison.
• Officer Caesar R. Goodson Jr., 45, faces one count of second-degree depraved-heart murder, involuntary manslaughter, second-degree assault, manslaughter by vehicle (gross negligence), manslaughter by vehicle (criminal negligence) and misconduct in office.
• Lt. Brian W. Rice, 41, faces one count of involuntary manslaughter, two counts of second-degree assault, two counts of misconduct in office and one count of false imprisonment.
• Sgt. Alicia D. White, 30, faces one count of involuntary manslaughter, second-degree assault and misconduct in office.
• Officer William G. Porter, 25, faces one count of involuntary manslaughter, second-degree assault and misconduct in office.
• Officer Garrett E. Miller, 26, faces two counts of second-degree assault, two counts of misconduct in office and one count of false imprisonment.
• Officer Edward M. Nero, 29, faces two counts of second-degree assault, two counts of misconduct in office and one count of false imprisonment.
Second-degree depraved-heart murder is punishable by up to 30 years in prison.
The six have a preliminary hearing on May 27, according to court documents available on the state of Maryland’s Judiciary Case Search website.
The officers have paid bail, according to the records. Bail for Goodson, White, Porter and Rice had been set at $350,000 each. Nero and Miller each had a bail of $250,000.
Time will tell if these officers will be indicted and face any jail time.