The Justice Department issued a statement saying there is “insufficient evidence” to prosecute the officers in the Freddie Gray case. That’s despite the previous administration finding evidence of the use of excessive force at the Baltimore Police Department.
The Trump Justice Department statement on its decision concludes: “After an extensive review of this tragic event, conducted by career prosecutors and investigators, the Justice Department concluded that the evidence is insufficient to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that Officer Caesar Goodson, Officer William Porter, Officer Garrett Miller, Officer Edward Nero, Lieutenant Brian Rice, or Sergeant Alicia White willfully violated Gray’s civil rights. Accordingly, the investigation into this incident has been closed without prosecution.”
It’s funny because the Obama Justice Department found that the Baltimore Police Department engaged in using excessive force; making unconstitutional stops, searches and arrests; using enforcement strategies that produce severe and unjustified disparities in rates of stops, searches and arrests of African Americans.
“Public trust is critical to effective policing and public safety,” said Attorney General Loretta E. Lynch. “Our investigation found that Baltimore is a city where the bonds of trust have been broken, and that the Baltimore Police Department engaged in a pattern or practice of unlawful and unconstitutional conduct, ranging from the use of excessive force to unjustified stops, seizures and arrests.”
“The results of our investigation raise serious concerns, and in the days ahead, the Department of Justice will continue working tirelessly to ensure that all Baltimoreans enjoy the safety, security and dignity they expect and deserve. I am grateful to all of the community members, local officials, faith leaders and current and former police officers who spoke with us during the course of our inquiry, and whose input will remain critical to our efforts as we move forward. Additionally, I commend the city and BPD for its proactive and collaborative approach to our inquiry and for demonstrating a strong commitment to restoring public confidence by already taking steps to make needed changes. I look forward to continuing our work together to implement urgent and necessary reforms.”
So, I’m not quite sure how the Trump Justice Department can gloss over the findings from last year about the Baltimore Police Department and say there is no evidence of excessive force.
Reaction on Twitter:
— Senator Ben Cardin (@SenatorCardin) September 12, 2017
Look back at the brutal arrest that led to 25-year-old Freddie Gray's death. https://t.co/63UFZhSc79
— AJ+ (@ajplus) September 12, 2017
Guess poor ol Freddie Gray just broke his own neck and back while in handcuffs. "Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere" MLK https://t.co/1xz4skz0cj
— Scott Fernandez (@rudy2582) September 12, 2017
Prayers for #FreddieGray's family. Heartbreaking all over again.
— Be A King (@BerniceKing) September 12, 2017