The State’s Attorney for Baltimore City on Thursday announced the indictment [press release] of six police officers on charges including murder and manslaughter over the death of Baltimore resident Freddie Gray while he was in police custody. Baltimore state attorney Marilyn Mosby [official profile] filed charges [JURIST report] earlier in May upon receiving the medical examiner’s report that ruled Gray’s death a homicide. Mosby’s office presented evidence to a grand jury, which returned indictments Thursday on all charges presented. An arraignment is scheduled for July 2.
Gray’s arrest and death led to widespread protests and civil disorder in the city of Baltimore. Last month Amnesty International (AI) [advocacy website] urged Baltimore police to exercise restraint [JURIST report] during protests, prioritize non-violent means and limit the use of force. Also in April, amidst national concern about police behavior, the US Department of Justice [official website] announced a $20 million body camera grant [press release] program that includes training, technical assistance and evaluation to accompany $17 million for local law enforcement agencies to purchase body-worn cameras. Attorney General Loretta Lynch said, “Body-worn cameras hold tremendous promise for enhancing transparency, promoting accountability, and advancing public safety for law enforcement officers and the communities they serve.”