William G. Porter was the first of the Baltimore 6 to be tried in the death of Freddie Gray. Judge Barry G. Williams declared a mistrial because the jury hung on all four charges.
The Baltimore Sun reports that legal experts say the information on how the jury voted is critical to understanding the process now playing out as prosecutors and Porter’s defense attorneys prepare for his scheduled retrial in June. The information also could help shape legal strategies in the pending cases against the other five police officers charged in Gray’s April arrest and death.
A gag order prevents prosecutors and defense attorneys from discussing the case,but one juror agreed to be interviewed. That one juror said that some were driven to tears during deliberations.
The anonymous juror said that the jury changed their votes multiple times during deliberations. For instance, a few more jurors wanted to convict Porter of manslaughter at the start of deliberations but changed their minds.
The jury consisted of 4 black women, 3 black men, 3 white women, and 2 white men. The only juror identified is Susan Elgin, an attorney.
The six police officers charged in Gray’s arrest and death have all pleaded not guilty. Four have been suspended without pay; the other two who only face misdemeanors are suspended with pay.