Jury Selection Begins For Officer Charged In The Death of Freddie Gray
On April 12, 2015, Freddie Gray was arrested in Baltimore. He was placed unsecured in a police van and was unresponsive when it reached the jail. Freddie was taken to the hospital where he died on April 19, 2015. The coroner’s report found that Freddie suffered a severe spinal cord injury while in police custody.
Baltimore State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby charged 6 officers in the death of Freddie Gray. Pre-trial activity has included numerous motions filed by defense attorneys. The first of the officers to stand trial is William Porter. Jury selection began today. Porter is charged with involuntary manslaughter, reckless endangerment and assault.
Folks, this looks as if jury selection is going to be a long process, although Baltimore Circuit Court Judge Barry Williams said that the trial would be over by December 17th.
In Baltimore, the judges conduct the interview of potential jurors, commonly called voir dire. Today, Baltimore Circuit Court Judge Barry Williams conducted initial questioning and planned to interview 66 prospective jurors in a private conference room. Judge Williams asked 75 potential jurors whether anyone had not heard about the case, the citywide curfew imposed after Gray’s death, or the $6.4 million settlement paid to his family.
All of the potential jurors told Judge Williams that they know of Freddie’s death and the settlement.
Today’s pool of 75 potential jurors includes 40 Blacks, 1 Latino and 1 Asian. The remainder are White.
Twelve jurors said they had family members in law enforcement.
Thirty-seven said they had been a victim or a suspect in a crime, had been to jail or had charges pending.
Twenty-six people said they had strong feelings about the charges against Porter.
We will keep updates on jury selection in the comment section, and when trial begins, will open another post to stay up-to-date on the trial.