Third Trial In The Death of Freddie Gray
Trial starts on Thursday of this week for the Baltimore police officer who was driving the van transporting Freddie Gray. This is the trial I was waiting for. Officer Caesar Goodson faces the most serious charges of the 6 Baltimore officers who were charged in Freddie’s death. He is also the only officer out of the 6 who did not give a statement to investigators.
Freddie was placed in the back of the van last April. By the time the van arrived at a police station less than hour later, Freddie’s spine was nearly severed, and he died several days later.
Goodson is charged with;
second-degree depraved-heart murder
misconduct in office
manslaughter by vehicles (gross negligence)
manslaughter by vehicles (criminal negligence)
Of the six officers charged, Goodson is the only one facing charges of murder and manslaughter by vehicles. The second-degree charge of depraved-heart murder carries a maximum sentence of 30 years in prison. Second-degree assault carries a penalty of up to 10 years in prison. Reckless endangerment carries a penalty of up to five years in prison. Misconduct in office does not carry a set term limit.
Two of the six officers charged in Freddie’s arrest and death have already been on trial. The trial of William Porter ended in a hung jury in December. He is scheduled to be retried later this year. Edward Nero opted for a bench trial and was cleared of all charges.
Goodson has also opted for a bench trial in front of the same judge, judge Barry G. Williams. The roles of Goodson and Nero were different.
The prosecutors in this trial are Michael Schatzow, who is the second-highest-ranking prosecutor in the Baltimore state’s attorney’s office, and Janice Bledsoe. Schatzow is a former federal prosecutor and longtime white-collar lawyer, while Bledsoe is a former defense attorney and briefly investigated police misconduct.
Goodson is represented by attorneys Matthew Fraling and Andrew Graham. They are expected to challenge Freddie’s autopsy findings. The Baltimore Sun reports that the trial is expected to feature medical experts giving contrasting opinions over exactly how and when Gray was injured.
The Baltimore Sun is hosting live updates of the trial. We’ll also update in the comment section including any available videos.