A Baltimore judge on Monday cleared a city police officer in the first major case involving the death of Freddie Gray that has been fully decided in court.
According to The Hill, Officer Edward Nero had been charged with second-degree assault, reckless endangerment and two counts of misconduct in office.
Officer Nero’s attorneys had decided to forego a jury trial and leave the decision up to the judge. And despite the verdict, Gray family attorney Billy Murphy said the judge did a good job.
— WATE 6 On Your Side (@6News) May 23, 2016
“You couldn’t have asked for a more fair-minded judge,” the attorney said in a CNN interview.
“I think the family is going to respect that opinion,” he said.
Gray died after a short police chase in April 2015. Charges were quickly brought against the officers involved amidst riots in the city of Baltimore. The trial of another police officer, William Porter, ended in a mistrial last year when a jury failed to make a decision.
That wasn’t the case this time.
“Note this was not a jury trial but the officer elected to be tried in a bench trial (judge decides alone.) Note the judge who found the police officer not guilty is African-American,” Greta Van Susteren wrote on her page.
“This verdict was / is no surprise. What IS a surprise is that the prosecutor brought this case against THIS officer.”
According to WJZ-TV, the Rev. Wesley West was the angriest person at the scene.
“I’m angry because this is what we deal with, and when I say ‘we,’ we’re talking about the black community and I’m a part of and represent that community as well. It seems like we have no voice when it comes to these issues,” West said.
“When it comes to conversations like this, we’re not involved. This should have been a jury trial where the community had a voice in this case. Of course, a system works in a system’s favor, that’s how I look at it. That judge represents the system, and the police officer represents a system, but they’re all one system working together. And again, I don’t think case was actually tried fairly when it comes down the community being involved.”
Of course, the actual innocence or guilt of Freddie Gray isn’t actually questioned. That’s irrelevant. The only thing that remains relevant is that some conservative is punished. You can bet that’s coming soon.
H/T The Hill
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