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More Than 50 Protesters Arrested In Baltimore After Police Officers Charged

The arrests came as crowds of demonstrators defied a 10 p.m. curfew. All six officers posted bond Friday evening.

Originally posted on
Updated on

What We Know So Far

  • The Baltimore State's Attorney Marilyn Mosby on Friday filed criminal charges against six police officers in the death of Freddie Gray.
  • More than 50 people were arrested as demonstrators defied a 10 p.m. curfew Friday.
  • On April 12, Gray was placed on the floor of a police van without a seatbelt and with his hands and legs in restraints. He suffered spinal injuries — which later proved to be fatal — during the ride.
  • At some point Gray struck a protruding bolt at the back of the police van, causing a serious head injury, the Baltimore Sun reported.
  • Baltimore Police said Thursday that the cases of the 201 adults who were arrested during Monday's violent protests have moved forward. Of those, 106 were not charged and were released, police said.
  • There were 49 juvenile arrests so far this week. The spokeswoman for the state's attorney told BuzzFeed News that 20 were released without charges.

Updates

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Police arrested 38 people at protests Friday, as well as 15 others for curfew violations, officials announced.

The 15 curfew violations were all at City Hall, police say. If anyone was arrested at Penn & North, "they haven't been processed yet."

During a press briefing, police also said Baltimore is "no longer under tactical alert," NBC News reported.

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Baltimore police arrested a handful of protesters Friday after the city's 10 p.m. curfew went into effect.

Following a day of celebration for many Baltimore locals, the 10 p.m. curfew came and went with relative calm. Police arrested a group of protesters outside city hall after curfew and news cameras at the scene captures at least one mild skirmish between officers and a few protesters. Pennsylvania and West North Avenues, the epicenter of riots on Monday, cleared out by 10:30 without incident.

Despite the jubilant atmosphere of the day, there were signs that the night might heat up. As BuzzFeed News first reported, a police sergeant sent a letter to superiors claiming that officers were "being challenged in the street" and that "it is about to get ugly." As curfew approached, protesters gathered at Pennsylvania and North and outside City Hall.

Ten minutes into curfew at Pennsylvania and North, a small group of protesters jumped onto the flatbed of a truck in the intersection and began dancing while chanting, "Fuck the curfew and the police too." But the protesters gradually left the scene and the intersection was empty but for media within half an hour.

The only known incidents of the night occurred at City Hall, where police arrested protesters who remained after 10 p.m.

vine.co

Officers now in riot gear, lining up 3-deep near North/Penn in #Baltimore. Seems like mostly media out, but not all.

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Baltimore police Friday released booking photos of the officers charged in Freddie Gray's death.

Court documents show that all six officers had posted bond Friday. The officers also all have preliminary hearings scheduled for May 27, the documents show.

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Baltimore police arrested 37 people for curfew violations Thursday night, the department announced Friday.

Officers also arrested one person for a handgun violation.

The protests were generally peaceful Thursday night, with most people dispersing at or around the time the curfew began at 10 p.m. Police have said the curfew will continue through the weekend.

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A large group of protesters once again gathered in Baltimore Friday, marching through streets and at one point entering a highway.

Crazy numbers here #FreddieGray #baltimoreuprising

vine.co

NOW: protesters are going onto the highway #Baltimore

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Gray's stepfather, Richard Shipley, made the comments during a news conference.

"We are satisfied with today's charges," Shipley said. "These charges are an important step in getting justice for Freddie. And we ask that whoever comes to our city, a city that we love, a city that we live in, come in peace."

The family's attorney, Bill Murphy, also spoke at length during the conference, calling for a new culture "where good policing is rewarded and bad policing is punished."

"Where bad policemen fear committing misconduct because good policemen no longer fear preventing it," Murphy added.

He went on to say that "we must seize this opportunity" to reform policing, and in doing so, honor Gray's legacy. When asked if he believes the six charged officers are guilty, Murphy noted that the case had just been filed.

"We haven't said we believe these officers are guilty," Murphy said. "We have said we want justice and justice is following the true facts wherever they lead."

Watch video of the news conference here:

Facebook: video.php
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The national outcry over Freddie Gray's death and other black people before him has cast light on similar cases from the past year — some leading to charges against the police officers involved, others not.

Demonstrations across the U.S. gained were sparked in earnest when 18-year-old Michael Brown was shot to death by a white police officer in Ferguson, Missouri, in August 2014. The shooting death awakened a movement that had begun with the previous killing of another black teenager, Trayvon Martin, who was shot in 2012 by neighborhood watchman George Zimmerman.

For a breakdown of other similar killings, when they happened, and their outcomes, go here.

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All six police officers charged in connection to Freddie Gray's death are now in custody, the Associated Press reported.

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Baltimore's police union on Friday accused the state's attorney of "rushing to judgment" for political reasons in filing criminal charges against six officers in the death of Freddie Gray.

"The investigation into this matter has not being concluded," Gene Ryan, president of Fraternal Order of Police, said at a news conference outside union headquarters. "Our officers, like every other American citizen, have a right to due process."

Earlier in the day, Baltimore State's Attorney Marilyn Mosby announced that she had filed criminal charges against six police officers in connection with Gray's death.Five of the six officers charged were in custody Friday.

Michael Davey, an attorney representing one of the officers, told reporters at the news conference that the officers were innocent and had done "nothing wrong."

"In my 20 years as an attorney, I had never seen such an egregious rush to judgment," Davey said, adding that he believed Mosby's decision was driven by "factors other than the law."

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The memo to Eastern Command staff, which was obtained by BuzzFeed News Friday, comes despite positive reactions among stakeholders to Baltimore State's Attorney Marilyn Mosby announcement that she had filed criminal charges against six police officers in the death of Freddie Gray.

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Civil rights activist Rev. Al Sharpton praised Mosby saying her "swift and smart actions" in bringing Gray justice "should serve as a model for other jurisdictions that are failing to hold law enforcement accountable."

In a statement provided to BuzzFeed News, Sharpton said, "Freddie Gray was robbed of the life he had ahead of him, his family was robbed of a loved one, and the Baltimore community has been robbed of a young man and, in recent days, a sense of peace. I applaud Marilyn Mosby, the Baltimore State's Attorney, for taking the first step today toward bringing justice to Freddie, those who loved him, and his city."

Sharpton said that the families and communities of Eric Garner, Walter Scott, Eric Harris and others, were still awaiting justice.

He advocated against advancing "the cause of justice with violence and looting" adding that Mosby's decision sent a message "that no one is above the law."

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Marilyn Mosby's announcement turned Freddie Gray's old neighborhood of Sandtown, which had been engulfed in riots that rocked the city of Baltimore just days earlier, into a block party.

BuzzFeed News reporter Albert Samaha reports from the Sandtown.

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Gray was placed in the back and wasn't secured by a seat belt – a violation of police policy. The van then began its five-stop journey. Read it here.

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Gray's family and their attorney Billy Murphy will respond to Marilyn Mosby's decision to file charges at a 5 p.m. press conference on Friday.

The conference will be held at the Reginald Lewis Museum of Maryland African America History & Culture.

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"As mayor, I have said from the beginning that no one is above the law," she said.

All six officers were immediately suspended from the police department after state's attorney Marilyn Mosby announced the charges against them. Rawlings-Blake said she "was sickened and heartbroken" when she heard the charges.

"There will be justice for Mr. Gray. There will be justice for his family. There will be justice for the city of Baltimore," she said.

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Here are President Obama's remarks:

It is absolutely vital that the truth comes out on what happened to Freddie Gray. It is my practice not to comment on the legal processes involved. That would not be appropriate. But I can tell you that justice needs to be served. All the evidence needs to be presented. Those individuals who are charged obviously are also entitled to due process and rule of law. So I want to make sure that our legal system runs the way it should. The Justice Department and our new attorney general is in communications with Baltimore officials to make sure that any assistance we can provide on the investigation is provided. What I think the people of Baltimore want more than anything else is the truth. That's what people around the country expect.
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Police union is asking the Baltimore state's attorney to appoint a special prosecutor for the #FreddieGray case.

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President Obama said it is "Absolutely vital" that truth about what happened to Freddie Gray comes out, the AP reported.

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Rep. Elijah Cummings, U.S. Representative for Maryland, said "I believe in" Mosby.

"Our children had to protest...in order to get here."

"I think a message has been sent by our state's attorney, that she treasures every life...let the wheels of justice begin to roll, and it's good they are rolling instead of standing still."

"Policemen and women will look at their jobs from a different standpoint."

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Here's video of Mosby announcing the charges:

View this video on YouTube

youtube.com
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Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake will make a statement on the developments at 1 p.m.

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BREAKING: Police union: 6 officers aren't responsible for Freddie Gray's death, were diligent in case.

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Drivers in Sandtown, where Freddie Gray is from, are honking their car horns upon hearing the news that charges were filed against the officers.

Lots of guard, police re-enforcements showing up at Penn/North. All you hear are honks. #Baltimore

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"So there's not going to be a riot in Baltimore. Hopefully" - Billy Murphy, attorney for Freddie Gray's family

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State's Attorney Marilyn Mosby said the medical examiner ruled Gray's death a homicide. Her investigation revealed that Gray was not wearing a seatbelt in the back of the van transporting him.

Gray was improperly arrested on April 12 because the officers had no probable cause to detain him, Mosby said.

Mosby said that Gray repeatedly requested medical attention but was denied.

Despite Gray's requests for medical attention, none of the officers involved called for medical assistance. Mosby said it was "grossly negligent" that the van rerouted to pick up another man arrested at a different location.

When Sgt. Alicia White opened the back door of the van, Gray was lying face-down on the ground and was unresponsive. When she spoke to him and he did not respond, she did not do anything further, despite Gray's "seriously deteriorating medical condition."

By the time Gray was removed from the van, he was in cardiac arrest and not breathing.

The investigation found that Gray sustained a fatal injury while in custody of the Baltimore police department.

Officer Caesar Goodson Jr., 45, who was driving the police van, was charged with second-degree murder, assault manslaughter, misconduct, and other charges.

Officer William Porter, 25, and Lt. Brian Rice, 41, were charged with involuntary manslaughter.

Sgt. Alicia White, 30, was charged with manslaughter and involuntary manslaughter.

Officers Edward Nero, 29, and Garrett Miller, 26, were charged with assault and misconduct.

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Here are scenes of protests in Baltimore and Philadelphia on Thursday night.

David Goldman / AP

A protester argues with an officer, and police line up in riot gear after a 10 p.m. curfew went into effect Thursday in Baltimore.

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The Baltimore police officer who initially made eye contact with Freddie Gray and chased him when he ran — which began the chain of events that led to Gray's death — was hospitalized in 2012 for mental health concerns, the Associated Press reported.

The concerns led police officials to take Lt. Brian Rice's gun, the AP reported, citing records from a sheriff's department and court.

Rice, who initially pursued Gray on a Baltimore street when Gray fled after Rice made eye contact April 12, declared three years ago that he "could not continue to go on like this" and threatened to commit an act that was censored in the public version of a report obtained by the AP from the Carroll County, Maryland, Sheriff's Office. Rice lived in the county, about 35 miles northwest of Baltimore.

The 2012 incident led to two suspensions for Rice, in 2012 and 2013, a person familiar with the police department staff told the AP.

It also was not immediately clear whether or when all of Rice's guns were returned. The sheriff's report said the weapons "should be returned back to owner pending determination of the (censored)." But Rice was accused in June 2012 of removing a semi-automatic handgun from the trunk of his personal vehicle and threatening [Karen McAleer, the mother of his son], according to a complaint filed in 2013. A police report about that June 2012 incident omitted any reference to allegations that Rice brandished a weapon but noted that officers who responded spent hours searching for Rice over concerns for his welfare.
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Freddie Gray suffered a serious head injury when he somehow rammed into a protruding bolt in the back of the police van, according to the police's report to prosecutors. The revelation was reported Friday in the Baltimore Sun and Washington Post.

The Post reported, "but that was not Gray's only head injury. And the injuries overall are consistent with what medical examiners often see in car collisions," citing an unnamed law enforcement official familiar with the investigation.

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The man who claims he was inside the police van with Freddie Gray after his arrest spoke out publicly Thursday to criticize reports that he said Gray tried to hurt himself.

Donta Allen told TV stations WJZ and WBAL that he only heard "a little banging" from Gray's side of the van and that it was a "smooth ride."

Police have said the men were separated by a metal wall and could not see each other.

Allen also said he was he was unhappy with a Washington Post story, which cited an unnamed prisoner as saying Gray was trying to injure himself.

The Post story pulled the comments from police documents. Allen has since identified himself as the other prisoner.

"And they trying to make it seem like I told them that, I made it like Freddie Gray did that to himself," Allen told WJZ. "Why the fuck would he do that to himself?"

Allen said that after arriving at the police station he shared his version of events with homicide officers.

Donta Allen, the 2nd prisoner in Freddie Gray's police van, speaks: "He can't hurt himself back in no paddy wagon" http://t.co/5Bdds5OBuf

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Protesters and police clashed in Philadelphia Thursday evening.

In live video footage, a large crowd could be seen pressing against a line of police near Vine Street.

This is the scene of altercation between #FreddieGray protesters and #Philadelphia Police. http://t.co/OeNACkDx80

According to reporters at the scene, protesters were trying to march onto an expressway as officers tried to stop them.

Protesters and cops. Very, very tense. "Hold the line," tell cops. Thought it broke for a second but it holds for now

Protesters could be heard chanting, "No good cops in a racist system."

Happening Now: Protesters trying to push through police line, walk on Philadelphia highway

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Baltimore Police Commissioner Anthony Batts praised the peaceful nature of a third night of protests Thurday, but warned that a 10 p.m. curfew will remain in effect over the weekend.

"This is not playtime," he said. "This is a serious, serious time."

Batts stressed that the curfew applied to all residents — including those on their home stoops — but officers would be using "common sense" in their enforcement. He would not answer if the curfew would be lifted following a peaceful weekend.

"It's a day-to-day evaluation," he said.

Maryland State Police Superintendent Col. William Pallozzi also appealed to Baltimore residents to "please, please observe the curfew."

"Make it easier on all of us," he said.

Batts wouldn't comment on a report that Freddie Gray sustained his fatal injuries from hitting the inside of a transport van, citing the fact that police have turned the investigation over to state prosecutors.

"They now have the ball," Batts said. "We're under their direction."

But Jason Downs, an attorney for the Gray family, told CNN that they strongly disagreed with any suggestion the 25-year-old harmed himself in the back of the van.

"In this case, common sense dictates Gray did not sever his own spinal cord, whether it was outside of the van or inside," Downs said.

Downs added that Gray did not have a pre-existing spinal injury, and noted there has been no suggestion that the medical examiner's final report has actually been completed.

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Massive crowds gathered once again Thursday to protest the death of Freddie Gray.

The protests happened the same day that police announced they had "exhausted every lead" in the investigation into Gray's death, the Baltimore Sun reported. The investigation has now been turned over to state prosecutors.

Police offered few new details about the case Friday, but did say that the van carrying him made a previously undisclosed stop.

However, citing unnamed law enforcement sources, WJLA reported that Gray died from injuries he sustained when he slammed into the back of the police van.

The sources also told WJLA that the medical examiner determined Gray did not suffer his injuries during his arrest and interaction with officers.

When reached for comment by BuzzFeed News, the medical examiner said they could not discuss a case that's under investigation. Police also would not comment when reached by BuzzFeed News.

The protests themselves remained generally peaceful Thursday afternoon. In Baltimore, crowds marched to city hall and gathered in nearby streets.

"This is what democracy looks like!" from Orleans Street overpass. Marchers headed south on St. Paul. #Baltimore

Police also announced Thursday that nine adults and two juveniles were arrested Wednesday evening, which was the second night Baltimore was under a mandatory 10 p.m. curfew.

During the march Thursday afternoon, protesters could be seen chanting and carrying signs.

Both the east and west side groups of the protest converge at St Paul street forming even larger group in #Baltimore

vine.co

Protesters also gathered in Philadelphia Thursday.