Criminal Charges Filed In The Murder Of Freddie Gray

The big questions regarding Freddie Gray were how he could sustain such lethal injuries while in police custody and why he was even arrested in the first place. Fortunately there is no attempt in Baltimore to allow the police to avoid the justice system as in Ferguson. Prosecutors have charged six police officers for crimes including second degree murder and manslaughter in the death of Freddie Gray. His arrest was also called illegal with the police lacking probable cause to detain him.

Gray has been criticized by conservatives (who tend to ignore the entire issue of abuses by the police) for running. In retrospect, it certainly is understandable why Gray would want to run from police. He also has a long history of arrests which have not led to convictions.

The system is working far better in Baltimore than in so many other cities where the death of black men in police custody have been ignored. We also need to look closer at the causes of the recent violence in light of reports such as in this article which places the blame on the police. Plus Gray is not the first to be injured by police in such a “rough ride.” Charges against the police officers directly involved in Grays murder are a good first step, but further investigation of police practices is also necessary.

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18 Comments

  1. 1
    Papamoka says:

    Lady Justice is blind for a reason.  Everyone is accountable for their actions under the law.  That is the way it should be for EVERYONE in America.

  2. 2
    Ron Chusid says:

    That is the way it should be, but we know it isn’t always the case.

  3. 3
    David Duff says:

    Why do I sense a frantic rush to judgment?  And that, of course, usually results in bad judgment.  And why do I suspect that in the end none of the policemen will be found guilty of anything other than misdemeanours?

    And I still await your own ‘confession’, Ron, after all, Baltimore has been a Democrat fiefdom for nearly 50 years.  Today there is not a single GOP elected officer anywhere in the city.  Those, er, progressive policies are working well, then, are they?

  4. 4
    Ron Chusid says:

    Confess what–that I’ve been right? The problems in Baltimore show what I’ve been saying all along about the problems of conservative views on crime, the drug war, and race. Having Democrats in office still does not mean we won’t have conservative policies in place-just less conservative than from Republicans.

    Racism and abuse of police powers is a problem nation wide. The difference in having Democrats instead of Republicans in power is that at least some (but by no means all) Democrats will recognize the problem and call for reforms, and that Democrats will recognize the racism which conservatives are fine with. While we have a clear case of kidnapping and homicide here, Democrats are willing to take action, instead of ignoring it or just calling such crimes misdemeanors.

  5. 5
    David Duff says:

    “Democrats are willing to take action”

    But … but … the Democrats have owned Baltimore lock, stock and pork-barrel for FIFTY YEARS!  That’s FIFTY as in 50!  And still you can’t face the truth … and still you blame the conservatives.

    I worry about you, Ron!

  6. 6
    Ron Chusid says:

    You are so obsessed with backing Republicans over Democrats that you miss the big picture. In a two party system we are often stuck with voting for the less bad alternative. Both parties are too conservative on the pertinent issues here, but at least the Democrats are not as conservative as the Republicans.

    Having one-party rule is also a bad thing, regardless of the party. That is why we need an opposition party which is not totally out of touch with reality like the Republicans.

  7. 7
    David Duff says:

    NO!  It has absolutely nothing to do with Republicans.  Baltimore is a Democrat ‘clusterfuck’ of mammoth proportions and what is worse is that it is repeated in other Democrat-controlled cities across America.  Try the Atlanta Board of Education for starters.

  8. 8
    Ron Chusid says:

    Everything you say has to do with your Republicans vs. Democrats nonsense. This is an issue in which both parties are at fault, but it hardly makes sense to attack Democrats on an issue where Republicans are even more conservative.

  9. 9
    David Duff says:

    “Everything you say has to do with your Republicans vs. Democrats nonsense”

    NO!  The GOP have absolutely nothing to do with the state of affairs in Baltimore (and all the other Democrat city fiefdoms).  It is a Democrat problem, made by Democrat policies, without even a drop of conservatism to be seen anywhere.

    This is a personal test for you, Ron.  These cities like Baltimore have been run, in general, along the lines of policy with which you agree. Today you have the result.  Now tell us where it all went wrong and make some suggestions as to what might put it right.  And please don’t mention the word ‘Republican’!

  10. 10
    Ron Chusid says:

    You continue to be so obsessed with partisan politics that you miss the point. Baltimore has not been run “along the lines of policy with which you agree.” There are no major political parties in this country which I agree with. It has been run by the party I disagree with significantly less.

    Problems such as in Baltimore show that the policies I oppose have been wrong. The problem is conservative police policies such as zero tolerance, privatization of prisons, the drug war, abuse of police power. The Democrats have been wrong on these issues, but in a two party system there is no choice but to vote Democratic because the Republicans are far worse on these issues, and are far less tolerable because of the racism they promote to attract their voters.

  11. 11
    Philo Vaihinger says:

    From the scoop in the press, I still think the pursuit, subdual, and arrest of Gray were lawful and sound police work, given he fled police who approached him in a high-crime neighborhood.
    But leaving him unsecured in the van was negligent, even if his own actions were a contributing factor to his injuries and death.
    Last I heard, the only existing testimony was that there had not been a rough ride, but if there was that would go far to sustaining the otherwise overly harsh charges.
    The city state’s attorney is asking for Jupiter in hopes a jury will give her the moon.
    Also, obviously, trying to placate the mob.
    Your defense of flight as reasonable reminds me of a black woman I knew years ago who defended her recently arrested son’s choice of a career in petty crime.
    It paid very well, she explained; much better than the lawful work commonly available.
    I was young, then, and I cannot tell you how shocked I was that that was her attitude, and she expected it to make complete and obvious sense to the small group of people she was talking to.
    But that is why we have the machinery of justice find people who make such choices and lock them up.
    The point is to deter some by incapacitating others, at least for a while, treating them to a very miserable existence in a cage.
    I have no doubt that is also the attitude of criminals, their friends, and their families everywhere.
    A neighborhood dominated by such a culture of crime would naturally view the entire machinery of justice as the enemy, as an army of occupation seeking to control and dominate their lives.
    More mobile criminal societies like the Gypsies and Irish Travelers would regard the whole surrounding societies on which they live by predation as enemies, and the forces of order as tools of those enemies.
    But many people quite far from the slums of this world, part of that surrounding society, all the same have attitudes like that in common with the riff-raff.
    If it pays better, do it.
    And that is why we have low security prisons stuffed with white collar criminals as well as high security prisons stuffed with thugs and morons.
    All which throws a different light on the riots in Baltimore and elsewhere, as far back as Ferguson.
    Should we view these all as, in some measure, mere revolts of a widespread and dismal, black criminal subculture against their natural and professional enemies, the police?
    And then we each individually need to choose, I suppose, for ourselves.
    Are we or are we not the public of which criminals and their enablers are public enemies?

  12. 12
    Ron Chusid says:

    Probable cause is needed to arrest someone. That in no way is comparable to your comparison to a woman who justified crime because it paid. In his case, no crime was committed (except by the police).

  13. 13
    Philo Vaihinger says:

    Actually, some courts have held that fleeing the police in a high-crime neighborhood is probable cause enough.
    The person arrested can be held for a while and then released if nothing is found to sustain a charge for some crime.
    That’s all it takes.

  14. 14
    Philo Vaihinger says:

    See Illinois v. Wardlow and other case law.

  15. 15
    Ron Chusid says:

    That’s all it takes…to destroy relationships between the citizens and the police. Such attitudes make the problems worse.

  16. 16
    Philo Vaihinger says:

    Back in the day, some people opposed the American war in Vietnam because it was not in our interests or because it was morally wrong, or because it was against international law, etc.
    But some opposed it because they were on Uncle Ho’s side.
    Now consider again cops vs criminals.
    And consider the many different reasons people may have for opposing the cops, not the least among them that they are actually on the side of the criminals.
    That has always been a deplorable feature of the left, that it included and still includes people like that.

  17. 17
    Philo Vaihinger says:

    That’s all it takes…to destroy relationships between the citizens and the police. Such attitudes make the problems worse.

    Pshaw. Who is going to run from police at their mere approach but a criminal?
    When traffic cops pull you over do you consider before stopping whether you’re in a mood to flee?
    Nonsense.
    No one thinks that way but crooks, and Gray is no counter-example.

  18. 18
    Ron Chusid says:

    Avoiding the police does not mean someone is a criminal. Gray was arrested many times without conviction and had good reason to be fearful of unjust actions by the police.

    This is the common attitude in the black community–hardly the view of criminals. Most of my black patients see the police as oppressors, and often have stories to back this up. I recently had a patient tell me that he remembers the days of lynchings–and thinks things are even worse today due to the way the police act.

    The attitude that only a criminal will run from the police, and therefore is grounds for arrest, is both a morally repugnant violation of basic civil liberties, and explains why we have such problems in cities such as Baltimore.

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