The six officers who were charged in the death of a 25-year-old man in Baltimore, Maryland, have been indicted by a grand jury. After "new information" surfaced, according to the State's Attorney Marilyn Mosby, she revised the charges and presented the evidence to the grand jury. But when will the Freddie Gray trial begin? The officers will be tried for their alleged involvement in Gray's death, which occurred April 19, while he was in police custody.
Officer Caesar R. Goodson Jr.; Lt. Brian Rice; Sgt. Alicia White; Officer Garrett E. Miller; Officer William G. Porter; and Officer Edward M. Nero will be arraigned on July 2. At a news conference Thursday, Mosby said the grand jury brought various charges against the officers, including one charge against Goodson of second-degree depraved-heart murder. The most serious charge on the list, depraved-heart murder generally means the suspect acted with a callous indifference or reckless disregard toward someone else's life.
It's been about three weeks since Mosby announced that there would be criminal charges against the six officers. With the grand jury indictments — which means that the jury members found there was sufficient probable cause to charge the officers — the cases will move forward to a higher court, some of which now have different charges than were first announced.
Each officer faces several charges ranging from misconduct in office to involuntary manslaughter, from reckless endangerment to intentional assault. A few officers had second-degree assault charges and false imprisonment charges removed, but the reckless endangerment charges were new. The officers' revised charges are:
- Officer Caesar R. Goodson, Jr.: second-degree depraved heart murder; manslaughter, second-degree assault, vehicular manslaughter, criminal negligence, misconduct in office, reckless endangerment
- Lt. Brian W. Rice: manslaughter, second-degree assault, two counts of misconduct in office, reckless endangerment
- Officer William G. Porter: manslaughter, second-degree assault, misconduct in office, reckless endangerment
- Sgt. Alicia D. White: manslaughter, second-degree assault, misconduct in office, reckless endangerment
Officer Garrett E. Miller: second-degree assault, two counts of misconduct in office, reckless endangerment
Officer Edward M. Nero: second-degree assault, two counts of misconduct in office, reckless endangerment
Gray died one week after he sustained a spinal cord injury while in custody of the Baltimore Police Department. His death sparked weeks of protests similar to the demonstrations in Ferguson, Missouri, after 18-year-old Michael Brown was killed, bringing the national spotlight on the issue of police brutality against African Americans.
Although the officers have been indicted and will face arraignment in a little over a month, they are currently free on bail. The arraignment will set the stage for how the legal battle will play out. It's the start of the trial process; an arraignment is an initial appearance before the court. This is when their charges will be read, and each officer will have the chance to enter a plea. Whether they decide to plead guilty or not guilty will determine how long the trial stage might last.
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