Baltimore

DOJ, City of Baltimore Pursue Police Reforms Through Consent Decree

Photo: via nationalreview.com

Photo: via nationalreview.com

The City of Baltimore and the Department of Justice have agreed on the conditions of a consent decree meant to provide reform and oversight to the Baltimore police department. 

The agreement still needs to be approved by a federal judge; however, once that occurs the consent decree will require the BPD to adopt a number of reforms, including but not limited to:

  • Using de-escalation techniques prior to using force
  • Officers receiving implicit bias training
  • Video cameras placed in all police vans

You can read more about the parameters of the consent decree HERE.

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Judge Rules that Malicious Prosecution Case Against Mosby Can Proceed

Marilyn Mosby;  Photo: Andrew Burton via bostonglobe.com

Marilyn Mosby; Photo: Andrew Burton via bostonglobe.com

Baltimore State's Attorney Marilyn Mosby, at the center of the failed prosecution of 6 Baltimore police officers charged in the death of Freddy Gray, will continue to have to defend herself against a malicious prosecution lawsuit brought by five of the six officers charged, a federal judge ruled.

U.S. District Judge Marvin Garbis said that the accusations of defamation, invasion of privacy, and malicious prosecution against Mosby can proceed. 

Other accusations like false arrest and abuse of power were dismissed. 

You can read more about the judge's ruling HERE.

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Highest Ranking Officer Charged in Freddie Gray Trial Acquitted on All Counts

Lt. Brian Rice;  Photo: Patrick Semansky/AP

Lt. Brian Rice; Photo: Patrick Semansky/AP

The highest ranking Baltimore police officer charged in the Feddie Gray murder trial has been acquitted.

Lieutenant Brian Rice had been charged with involuntary manslaughter and reckless endangerment, among others, before Judge Barry Williams acquitted him of those charges this morning. 

"The state failed to show that the defendant, even if he was aware of the risk, consciously disregarded that risk," said Judge Williams in reference to Lt. Rice's failure to seatbelt Mr. Gray into the back of a police van the day he died.

The acquittal of Lt. Rice is the latest in a string of failures by the prosecution in their attempt to charge six officers in the 2015 death of Freddie Gray.

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Man Fires "AR-15 Type" Rifle at Baltimore Cops Before Being Shot and Killed

Photo: @BaltimorePolice via Twitter

Photo: @BaltimorePolice via Twitter

Baltimore police officers shot and killed a man after the suspect allegedly opened fire on them with an "AR-15 type" rifle early Friday.

The incident began when officers were drawn to the sound of gunfire coming from a neighborhood on Baltimore's west side. When officers arrived they were met by gunfire from a man wielding a rifle. 

Officers returned fire and the suspect retreated into an apartment. The suspect was ultimately located and found to have a gunshot wound to his upper body.

He was transported to a local hospital where he was pronounced dead.

Police don't yet know why the man was shooting his gun prior to police arrival as no victims have come forward; however, authorities are exploring the theory that the gunfire may have been used to lure officers to the scene in the first place.

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BREAKING: Baltimore Police Officer NOT GUILTY in Freddie Gray Trial

Officer Caesar Goodson;  Photo: Jose Luis Magana/Reuters

Officer Caesar Goodson; Photo: Jose Luis Magana/Reuters

The police officer accused of giving Freddie Gray the "rough ride" that caused him to be mortally injured has been found not guilty of murder.

Baltimore police officer Caesar Goodson, 46, was acquitted on all six charges, including counts related to second-degree "depraved heart" murder, manslaughter, assault, and others.

Judge Barry Williams issued the ruling, lambasting the prosecution for offering theories and not evidence. "The court cannot simply let things speak for themselves," Judge Williams said.

This latest acquittal marks the third setback for the prosecution in their attempt to charge officers related to the death of Freddie Gray.

In December, the trial of Officer William Porter ended in a hung jury and last month Officer Edward Nero was acquitted in his trial.

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Baltimore Cops Sue Marilyn Mosby for Defamation

State's Attorney Marilyn Mosby;  Photo: Alex Brandon via washingtontimes.com

State's Attorney Marilyn Mosby; Photo: Alex Brandon via washingtontimes.com

Two Baltimore police officers have filed a defamation lawsuit against State's Attorney Marilyn Mosby.

Sergeant Alicia White and Officer William Porter filed the lawsuit earlier this month. In the suit, they claim that Mosby condemned them in public in order to quell public anger over the death of Freddie Gray and not as part of an attempt to prosecute an alleged crime.

The suit reads, in part, "These among other statements were made not for the purpose of prosecuting crimes that had allegedly been committed by White and Porter, but rather for purposes of quelling the riots in Baltimore."

It further reads, "They exposed plaintiffs to public scorn, hatred and contempt, thereby discouraging others in the community from having a favorable opinion or associating with plaintiffs."

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Baltimore Police Shoot Teen Armed With Replica Pistol on One-Year Anniversary of Freddie Gray Riots

Photo of replica gun used in incident;  Photo: Baltimore Police via baltimoresun.com

Photo of replica gun used in incident; Photo: Baltimore Police via baltimoresun.com

Detectives in East Baltimore shot a 14-year old carrying a detailed replica pistol on Wednesday, the one-year anniversary of the Freddie Gray protests and riots.

The teenager suffered non-life threatening injuries; however, the incident sparked tension in the community.

Officers spotted the young man carrying what they believed to be a pistol on E. Baltimore St. in the late afternoon. When they confronted the individual a foot pursuit ensued. 

At some point, an officer fired his weapon at the individual, causing an injury to the "lower extremities."

Although the teenager was carrying a replica BB gun, a perfunctory look at the weapon revealed just how closely it resembled a genuine pistol.

Police Commissioner Kevin Davis said, "It's an absolute, identical replica semiautomatic pistol. Those police officers had no way of knowing that it was not, in fact, an actual firearm. It looks like a firearm."

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BREAKING: Judge Declares Mistrial in Case Against Baltimore Police Officer William Porter, City Braces for Unrest

Officer William Porter;  Photo: Baltimore Police

Officer William Porter; Photo: Baltimore Police

Judge Barry Williams declared a mistrial in the case against Baltimore police officer William Porter, the first among six officers charged in the death of Freddie Gray on April 19.

The jurors deadlocked in the case against Porter, where he was charged with manslaughter, second-degree assault, reckless endangerment, and misconduct in office.

In light of the mistrial, the city of Baltimore is on edge in anticipation of possible protests and civil unrest.

Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake asked the public to respect the judicial process and stated, “In the coming days, if some choose to demonstrate peacefully to express their opinion, that is their constitutional right.”

But Mayor Rawlings-Blake also stressed that the city would protect it’s citizens in the event riots break out. “In the case of any disturbance in the city, we are prepared to respond. We will protect our neighborhoods, our businesses and the people of our city,” the mayor said.

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Homicide Rates Spike in Baltimore, DC, St. Louis, and Chicago

A review of several major city homicide rates through late-2015 show that many are likely to see their highest murder totals in recent memory. 

The uptick in violent crime comes amid a national debate on whether an increasingly hostile, anti-police movement across the nation is affecting law enforcement practices and public safety. 

Although these numbers comprise but one metric in a broader analysis of crime in society, the dramatic rise in violence is striking.

Baltimore, arguably the epicenter of hostility toward law enforcement, has seen a particularly steep rise in it's homicide rate.

Homicides - Baltimore

2015 - 305 (through Nov 17)
2014 - 211

Homicides - Washington, D.C. 

2015 - 145 (through Nov 17)
2014 - 105

Homicides - St. Louis

2015 - 173 (through Nov 10)
2014 - 159

Homicides - Chicago

2015 - 418 (through Nov 15)
2014 - 425

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