Baltimore officers charged in Freddie Gray death seek change of venue for trial

Attorneys filed a request saying that the officers won’t be able to get a fair trial in Baltimore

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Attorneys representing the six Baltimore police officers charged in the death of Freddie Gray are asking to move the trial to another area in Maryland, claiming that having it in Baltimore would lead to an unfair trial.

“Based on the relative size and characteristics of Baltimore City, the prejudicial information that has penetrated every form of online, printed and broadcast media, and the short time between the alleged crimes and the trial(s), the presumption of prejudice prevents the Officers in this case from receiving fair trials,” the attorneys wrote in an 85-page brief, according to the Baltimore Sun.

Mr Gray was arrested on 12 April in West Baltimore and suffered a severed spinal cord while in police custody. He died a week later, sparking protests that devolved into riots in the Baltimore area. A city-wide curfew was put in place and the National Guard was called in to help control the situation.

Baltimore City Prosecutor Marilyn Mosby announced charges against the six officers on 1 May and a grand jury formally indicted the officers last week.

The most significant charge is a second-degree depraved-heart murder against Officer Caesar Goodson, which carries a possible 30-year prison sentence. Other officers were charged with involuntary manslaughter (10 years) and manslaughter by vehicle (10 years). See a list of full charges here.

The other officers charged are Lieutenant Brian Rice, Sergeant Alicia White, Officer Garrett Miller, Officer William Porter and Officer Edward Nero.


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