Just a quick post here to add some additional insight into the acquittal of Office Caesar Goodson, first from an experienced trial attorney in Baltimore, then from two of the Baltimore Sun reporters who have most intensively covered these “Freddie Gray” trials, and finally an editorial from the Baltimore Sun editorial board urging Mosby to reconsider these “Freddie Gray” trials.
Baltimore Criminal Defense Attorney Warren Brown
First up is Baltimore criminal defense attorney Warren Brown:
For those not in a position to view the video, below is a transcript of the video provided by a “Friend of Legal Insurrection”:
Question: What do you think is next in the case? It’s kind of the questions everyone is asking, what’s going to happen next?
Brown: Well, you know, the State’s going to have to re-assess. One the things I’m certain they are going to have to reconsider is the most recent revelation from the Sheriff’s department that they did not do an investigation. And that’s important, because early on in this case the defense had attempted to subpoena Bledsoe, Janet Bledsoe, and Michael Schatzow, the prosecutors, but they were prohibited from doing that because they were just the prosecutors, they didn’t investigate the case. Now we’re finding out that they had done the investigation, presented it to the Sheriffs just for their signature, and so there may be another request on the part of the defense that these two become witnesses, and if that’s the case that might give the State an out, that might give them an opportunity to say, “Well, we’re not going to proceed any further.
Question: Overall, the verdict, do you think?
Brown: Oh, absolutely the right verdict. Keep in mind that you have an African-American judge who was in the Justice Department prosecuting police misconduct. So this is not someone that is going to be sympathetic on the face [of it] to the defendant who happens to be a police officer, on the contrary. His opinion was well-reasoned. He juxtaposed the law to the facts, and made it very clear that what you are asking me to do, States Attorney, I cannot do because you haven’t presented the evidence necessary for me to do that. And that’s justice, that’s what we expect from a judge or jury – to render the decision based on the evidence juxtaposed to the standard that the state is held to – which is proving their case beyond a reasonable doubt. To say that Goodson murdered Freddie Gray was absurd right from the start, but as I indicated before, they made their decision, the State’s Attorney office, to prosecute and then work backwards as opposed to getting all of the evidence, looking it over, and deciding where to go. And we know that because the police turned their investigation over to Marilyn Mosby’s office on a Thursday and on Friday morning she’s coming down the steps of War Memorial indicating what she’s going to do, and it left us all wondering, “How could you have decided that quickly?” So they made the decision to prosecute and work backwards and now they are having to pay the price for that because the evidence is just not there to support it.
Baltimore Sun Reporters Kevin Rector and Justin Fenton
Baltimore Sun Editorial
Finally, we have an editorial from the Baltimore Sun calling for Mosby to reconsider the next schedules prosecutions of four more of the officers charged in Freddie Gray’s death, including the re-trial of Officer William Porter. Here’s a taste, to read the whole thing click Goodson verdict should force Mosby to reconsider charges:
The acquittal of Officer Caesar Goodson on all counts in the death of Freddie Gray should prompt State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby to re-evaluate whether or how to pursue the cases against the four remaining officers charged in the case. Officer Goodson, as the driver of the van in which Gray was injured, was most responsible for his safety. If prosecutors’ evidence isn’t strong enough to prove he was criminally responsible, it’s hard to see how they could convict the others, particularly on charges of manslaughter and assault. Moreover, Ms. Mosby needs to ask whether her deputies’ courtroom tactics threaten to do irreparable harm to the crucial relationship between police and prosecutors. Things got ugly during the Goodson trial in a way that didn’t serve the public’s interest.
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