Protests are widely expected following the surprise decision to drop all charges against police officers involved in Freddie Gray’s death. The Baltimore prosecutor’s office dropped all charges against three officers who were due to stand trial.
There was an outpouring of anger following the announcement. Many social media users accused the police of getting away with murder and called the justice system ‘broken’. The prosecutor in the case, Marilyn Mosby, said “We do not believe Freddy Gray killed himself.” This comment has encouraged many to believe Mosby would continue the prosecution but has been stymied.
Mosby criticized the police investigation into Gray’s death, claiming they hindered the prosecutions. She called for significant reforms to the justice system to prevent similar incidents. This echoes the arguments of Black Lives Matter.
Freddie Gray died while handcuffed in the back of a police van without a seat belt. Two other officers were acquitted on charges ranging from corrupt conduct to neglect and another was released following a mistrial. Today’s decision to drop charges against the three remaining officers means nobody will be punished for Gray’s death.
The legal case may be over but public reaction is likely to be intense. There were widespread protests following Gray’s death, which many see as part of a pattern of police violence against African-Americans. The Black Lives Matter movement may choose to protest the decision.