Freddie Gray, in the city of Baltimore, has undergone a battlefield of injustice once again, after the acquittal of Officer Caesar Goodson, Jr. Gray was arrested on April 12, 2015, by six officers, for suspicion of carrying a weapon.
The prosecution, led by Marilyn Mosby, stated that Goodson failed to secure Gray, gave him with a purposeful “rough ride” and refused to provide him any medical attention, which resulted in his unfortunate death. Gray’s family lawyer, Billy Murphy, stated that the family’s goal to file charges failed to achieve the necessary consequences for, yet another case of police brutality in Baltimore. Gray’s death incited angry protests from different communities in the city and nationwide due to civilian injustice. However, there are supporters who agree that Goodson’s acquittal was done for the sake of justice, separating the truth from outside pressures, such as racial discrimination in Baltimore.
Baltimore Judge Barry Williams believed that since surveillance footage showed Goodson stepping out of the van to check on Gray, then returning back to driving. This led the judge to believe there was no sign of malintent. Williams acknowledged that not securing Gray’s seatbelt was an error, but Goodson’s lawyers stated, that was due to Gray’s volatile behavior when they initially tried to secure him in the van. The lack of evidence of a purposeful “rough ride” resulted in a tragedy, instead of an unlawful crime, Goodson’s lawyers contended. Prosecutors claimed Goodson had a few chances to put Gray in safely instead, he sustained his injuries in the back of the Baltimore police van.
William Porter, a Baltimore police officer, also involved in Gray’s arrest, claimed Gray did ask for help, but it was not given. From an objective point of view, it is appalling that Williams should dismiss a case due to the lack of evidence when the suspect died from fatal injuries, attained upon his arrest. Baltimore has been notorious for people dying while in police custody over the past four years. Often prosecutors have been able to settle out of court by paying victims’ families due to mistreatment. The number of settlements in Baltimore is reportedly in the millions.
Police brutality has been a crime that takes place everywhere. The Baltimore incident, involving Gray, should cause policemen to make an effort to put aside their pride and treat arrested civilians as people, despite race or status. While some Baltimore attorneys believe justice has been served for Goodson, justice has been dismantled for Gray’s family. Gray was taken into custody from the street and provided with careless treatment from all six officers. Should the other five be acquitted, such as Goodson, it will make a statement that no justice has been served. The judicial system has their own rules to condemn and the system does not stand for the rights of the people.
News Opinion by Andrea Lopez
Edited by Jeanette Smith
RAWSTORY: Freddie Gray is one of many : how dying in custody is much more common than you think
USA TODAY: In Freddie Gray case, did justice system fail or prove resilient?
BM: Baltimore Cop Confesses Freddie Gray Sought Help
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