A Baltimore judge acquitted former Baltimore cop Edward Nero on all charges in the April 19, 2015 death of Freddie Gray.
The judge ruled that there were no “credible facts” to support Nero’s involvement in Gray’s death. The judge’s decision came as a relief to Nero’s supporters who believe he was a political pawn in the racially charged case.
Nero is one of five officers who were wrongfully arrested in Gray’s death. A sixth officer, the police van driver, was also arrested.
Nero, 30, was on bicycle patrol in one of Baltimore’s poorest neighborhoods when he and Officer Garrett E. Miller, 26, chased Gray and arrested him for possessing a folding knife.
Gray, 25, died a week later from complications of a severed spinal cord that he suffered after he was violently thrown around in the back of the police van during the rough ride to the precinct.
Nero and Miller placed Gray in the back of the police van. That is where Nero and Miller’s contact with Gray ended before the fatal ride to the precinct.
But Baltimore’s newbie State Attorney Marilyn Mosby, who is black, saw fit to charge the white officers with something after the city nearly burned down by lawless citizens during a week of rioting.
The only officer who is culpable in Gray’s death is the police van’s driver, Officer Caesar Goodson Jr., who failed to secure Gray in the back of the van and failed to check on him when he cried out in pain frequently during the rough ride.
Goodson Jr’s trial is set to begin on June 6, followed by the trials of the other wrongly accused officers Lt. Brian Rice (July 5), Officer Garrett Miller (July 27), Officer William Porter (Sept. 6) and Sgt. Alicia White (Oct. 13).
Photo: Jerry Jackson / Baltimore Sun