[VIDEO] Justice Department Calls For Baltimore Police Overhaul Plan

A U.S. Justice Department investigation into practices of the Baltimore Police Department found disparities in the rates African-Americans were stopped, searched and arrested. The WSJ’s Lee Hawkins explains.

People celebrate after State's Attorney Marilyn Mosby announced criminal charges against all six officers suspended after Freddie Gray suffered a fatal spinal injury while in police custody in Baltimore. Photo: David Goldman/Associated Press

People celebrate after State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby announced criminal charges against all six officers suspended after Freddie Gray suffered a fatal spinal injury while in police custody in Baltimore. Photo: David Goldman/Associated Press

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This July 30, 2015 picture shows a blighted home in west Baltimore. Murders are spiking again in Baltimore, three months after Freddie Gray’s death in police custody sparked riots. This year’s monthly bloodshed has twice reached levels unseen in a quarter-century. In May, Baltimore set a 25-year high of 42 recorded killings. After a brief dip in June, the homicide is soaring again. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

This July 30, 2015 picture shows a blighted home in west Baltimore. Murders are spiking again in Baltimore, three months after Freddie Gray’s death in police custody sparked riots. This year’s monthly bloodshed has twice reached levels unseen in a quarter-century. In May, Baltimore set a 25-year high of 42 recorded killings. After a brief dip in June, the homicide is soaring again. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)


Cops in Freddie Gray Case Suing Marilyn Mosby: ‘Ulterior Motives in Charging the Officers’

Marilyn Mosby

The lawsuits allege false arrest, false imprisonment, defamation or false light, and other assertions. They were filed in U.S. District Court in Maryland in 2015 in late April and early May around the time the officers were arrested.

Baltimore State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby is going from prosecutor to civil defendant in connection with the case of the death of Freddie Gray.

“Marilyn Mosby’s comments in her press conference today confirm that the charges brought against my clients, Sgt. Alicia White and Officer William Porter, as well as the other four officers, were politically motivated and not supported by evidence to establish probable cause.”

On Wednesday, Mosby announced that charges against three officers still facing trial were being dropped. Mosby gave only a statement, but had to leave without taking questions because five of the officers in the case have filed lawsuits against her.

People celebrate after State's Attorney Marilyn Mosby announced criminal charges against all six officers suspended after Freddie Gray suffered a fatal spinal injury while in police custody in Baltimore. Photo: David Goldman/Associated Press

People celebrate after State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby announced criminal charges against all six officers suspended after Freddie Gray suffered a fatal spinal injury while in police custody in Baltimore. Photo: David Goldman/Associated Press

Officers Garrett Miller, Edward Nero and William Porter as well as Sgt. Alicia White and Lt. Brian Rice are suing Mosby and Maj. Samuel Cogen of the Baltimore Sheriff’s Office. Cogen was the law enforcement officer who filed charging documents against the officers.

The lawsuits allege false arrest, false imprisonment, defamation or false light, and other assertions. They were filed in U.S. District Court in Maryland in 2015 in late April and early May around the time the officers were arrested.

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Gray died in a hospital on April 19, 2015, a week after police stopped him on a Baltimore street. After his arrest, officers placed Gray in the back of a police van, which made several stops.

When the van arrived at the police station, Gray was unresponsive. His neck was broken and compressed, prosecutors said in court, comparing the spinal injury to those suffered after a dive into a shallow pool.
Demonstrators destroy the windshield of a Baltimore Police car as they protest the death Freddie Gray, an African American man who died of spinal cord injuries in police custody, in Baltimore, Maryland, April 25, 2015. Protesters returned to Baltimore's streets Saturday to vent outrage over the death of Gray. JIM WATSON/AFP/Getty Images

Demonstrators destroy the windshield of a Baltimore Police car as they protest the death Freddie Gray, an African American man who died of spinal cord injuries in police custody, in Baltimore, Maryland, April 25, 2015. Protesters returned to Baltimore’s streets Saturday to vent outrage over the death of Gray. JIM WATSON/AFP/Getty Images

Rice and Nero had already been acquitted in separate bench trials. So had Officer Caesar Goodson, who apparently has not filed suit. Porter was the first to be tried but his case ended with the jury unable to reach a unanimous decision.

Mosby’s office dropped the charges against Miller, Porter and White on Wednesday.Freddie Gray case: Charges dropped against remaining officers

An attorney for two of the officers said Wednesday that there were ulterior motives in charging the officers.

“Marilyn Mosby’s comments in her press conference today confirm that the charges brought against my clients, Sgt. Alicia White and Officer William Porter, as well as the other four officers, were politically motivated and not supported by evidence to establish probable cause,” Michael E. Glass said.

He said his client suffered “extensive pain and suffering.” Porter and White had been suspended without pay until Wednesday. They are now on desk duty after more than a year on leave.

Rice, the highest-ranking officer charged in the case, paints himself as minimally involved, according to court documents. Read the rest of this entry »


Marilyn Mosby Files Motion for Gag Order–In Wrong Court. Judge Laughs, Says No


BREAKING: Six Baltimore Police Officers Charged in Freddie Gray Death

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Officer Caesar Goodson, driver of transport van, faces second-degree murder charge

BALTIMORE—Scott Calvert, Kris Maher and Joe Palazzolo report:  Six city police officers were charged Friday in the death of Freddie Gray, a 25-year-old man who suffered fatal spinal injuries last month while in custody, a swift development in a case that has heightened the national focus on policing in black communities.

The announcement by State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby, the city’s chief prosecutor, surprised many in a city where officials had cautioned for days that the investigation might not come to a quick resolution. Spontaneous celebrations broke out in some neighborhoods that were roiled by looting and violence after Mr. Gray’s funeral on Monday, while police union officials said they were disappointed in what they called a rush to judgment.

“These charges are an important step in getting justice for Freddie.”

— Richard Shipley, Mr. Gray’s stepfather

The most serious charges were brought against Officer Caesar Goodson, who was driving a police transport van that brought Mr. Gray to a police station after his April 12 arrest. Mr. Goodson, 45 years old, was charged with second-degree murder, involuntary manslaughter and other charges.

People celebrate after State's Attorney Marilyn Mosby announced criminal charges against all six officers suspended after Freddie Gray suffered a fatal spinal injury while in police custody in Baltimore. Photo: David Goldman/Associated Press

People celebrate after State’s Attorney Mosby announced criminal charges against all six officers suspended after Freddie Gray suffered a fatal spinal injury while in police custody in Baltimore. Photo: David Goldman/Associated Press

“I have never seen such a hurried rush to deliver criminal charges. We believe these officers will be vindicated as they have done nothing wrong.”

— Mr. Davey, president of the Baltimore police union

Officers William Porter, 25, Lt. Brian Rice, 41, and Sgt. Alicia White, 30, were each charged with involuntary manslaughter, second-degree assault and misconduct in office. Officers Edward Nero, 29, and Garrett Miller,26, were charged with second-degree assault and misconduct in office. Lt. Rice and Messrs. Nero and Miller were also charged with false imprisonment for making what Ms. Mosby termed an illegal arrest of Mr. Gray.

[Read the full text here, at WSJ]

The officers surrendered to police and bail was set in amounts ranging from $250,000 to $350,000, according to court records and state officials. By Friday night, all six officers had posted bail and been released, according to public records. Like Mr. Gray, three of the officers, including Mr. Goodson, are African-American.

Mike Davey, a Baltimore attorney who represents Lt. Rice and said he was speaking for all six officers, said he thought the publicity surrounding the case had motivated the filing of charges, and that the officers would ultimately be cleared. Read the rest of this entry »


[VIDEO] Alan Dershowitz Rips Charges Against Baltimore Cops: ‘Sad Day for Justice’

Josh Feldman writes: Alan Dershowitz really went after Baltimore State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby today for charging the six cops involved in the death of Freddie Gray, saying it was entirely based on politics and “crowd control.”

Dershowitz lamented that “this is a very sad day for justice” and told Steve Malzberg that Mosby acted out of a “desire to prevent riots.” It will be “virtually impossible,” he predicted, for the six officers involved to get a fair trial. Read the rest of this entry »


[VIDEO] #Baltimore: City State’s Attorney Says Freddie Gray’s Arrest Illegal, Charges Officers

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BALTIMORE (WJZ) — City State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby says Freddie Gray received his critical injuries in Baltimore police custody and has charged all six officers involved in his death.

The state medical examiner’s office turned over Gray’s autopsy on Friday morning, a day after the police turned over their investigation into Gray’s death.

“The findings of our comprehensive, thorough, and independent investigation coupled with the ME’s determination that Mr. Gray’s death was a homicide which we received today, has led us to believe that we have probable cause to file criminal charges,” Mosby said.

She charged all six officers in the death of Gray and said his arrest was illegal.

“Following transport from Baker Street, Mr. Gray suffered a severe and critical neck injury as a result of being handcuffed, shackled by his feet and unrestrained inside of the BPD wagon,” Mosby said.

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“At no point was he secured by a seatbelt while in the wagon contrary to a BPD general order,” she added. “Despite stopping for the purpose of checking on Mr. Gray’s condition, at no point did he seek nor render any medical assistance for Mr. Gray.”

  • The officers are being charged with a number of counts of manslaughter, assault and misconduct. One officer will even be charged with a count of murder.
  • Officer Caeser B. Goodson, Jr. was charged with second-degree depraved heart murder, involuntary manslaughter, second-degree assault, two counts of manslaughter by vehicle and misconduct in office.
  • Officer William G. Porter was charged with involuntary manslaughter, second-degree assault and misconduct in office.
  • Lt. Brian W. Rice was charged with involuntary manslaughter, two counts of second-degree assault, two counts of misconduct in office and false imprisonment.
  • Officer Edward M. Nero charged with two counts of second-degree assault, two counts of misconduct in office and false imprisonment.
  • Officer Garret Miller charged with two counts of second-degree assault, two counts of misconduct in office and false imprisonment.
  • Sgt. Alicia White involuntary manslaughter, second-degree assault and misconduct in office.

Warrants have been issued for the arrest of the officers…(read more)

CBS Baltimore


#Baltimore: Nearly 100 Officers Injured

Protests in Baltimore After Funeral Held For Baltimore Man Who Died While In Police Custody

2:45 p.m. During a press conference Thursday, Baltimore Police Capt. Eric Kowalcyzk said 98 officers reported injuries this week, including 43 who required hospitalization.

Nine adults and two juveniles were arrested between midnight and 3 a.m. for curfew violations, according to police.

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Of the 201 people initially arrested, 106 have been released without criminal charges. The remaining 95 have been criminally charged, Capt. Kowalcyzk said.

Capt. Kowalcyzk says they continue to investigate video footage of those who have been released from custody in hopes of filing criminal charges in the future…(read more)

CBS DC


Cook County Cops Find More Than a Ton of Marijuana in Frozen Avocado Packages

avocado-pulp-marijuana

About $10 million of marijuana was found

Police in Illinois seized more than a ton of marijuana that was hidden in packages of frozen avocado pulp, the Cook County Sheriff’s Office said Wednesday.

Glockamole

Glockamole!

About 2,100 pounds of marijuana, worth an estimated $10 million, was discovered on March 4 in bricks dispersed throughout more than 1,500 boxes of packaged avocado at a cold storage facility in Cook County. Read the rest of this entry »