Freddie Gray arresting officer Edward Nero was found not guilty on all counts by Baltimore City Circuit Court Judge Barry Williams Monday morning.
Nero faced second-degree assault, reckless endangerment and two counts of misconduct in office.
Nero waived his right to a trial by jury. His bench trial began May 12 and final arguments were heard Thursday.
WJZ’s Ron Matz says the trial was attended by a group of Baltimore City police officers, most in plain clothes. After the verdict was read, they came up to Nero one by one, embracing him and patting him on the back. Nero was seen with tears in his eyes.
Gray, a 25-year-old black man from the Sandtown area of Baltimore, died on April 19, 2015 of a spinal cord injury he sustained while in police custody.
His death set off more than a week of protests followed by looting, rioting and arson that prompted a citywide curfew.
According to WJZ’s Mike Schuh, who was outside the courthouse, there was a huge “roar of disapproval” that came from the protesters outside.
One of the people leading the charge is Rev. Wesley West.
“I’m angry because this is what we deal with, and when I say ‘we,’ we’re talking about the black community and I’m a part of and represent that community as well, it seems like we have no voice when it comes to these issues,” he said. “When it comes to conversations like this, we’re not involved. This should have been a jury trial where the community had a voice in this case. Of course a system works in a system’s favor, that’s how I look at it. That judge represents the system, and the police officer represents a system, but they’re all one system working together. And again I don’t think case was actually tried fairly when it comes down the community being involved.”
Absolutely no coverage from this case has been covered by the mainstream media.
Baltimore police officer Edward Nero found not guilty of misconduct in office and reckless endangerment.