Maryland city Baltimore has erupted in celebration on the streets overnight, as Baltimore State Attorney Marilyn Mosby announced criminal charges—including murder and manslaughter—against six local police officers over the death of 25-year-old Freddie Gray.
Mosby confirmed Gray’s death would be treated as a homicide on Friday, following a week of protests and clashes with police engulfing the city and making headlines worldwide. Shouts of “justice!” and praise for Mosby’s announcement were heard during the address, before protesting was traded for celebration in Baltimore.
This week, TIME published a powerful cover photo comparing current events to Baltimore’s historic 1968 riots.
— TIME.com (@TIME) April 30, 2015
On April 19 this year, Gray died in police custody from a spinal cord injury, after being transported in a police van without being given a seatbelt or adequate medical attention. On April 27, following Gray’s funeral and during an ongoing investigation, protests—sometimes dissolving into riots—began in Baltimore, capturing global attention.
Video emerged of Gray’s arrest, after the 25-year-old fled from police. Police allegedly arrested Gray for carrying a switchblade; today, State attorney Mosby confirmed the knife was legal, and not a switchblade.
State Attorney Marilyn Mosby’s address powerfully condemned the unlawful actions of six officers at the time of Gray’s arrest, “To the people of Baltimore: I heard your call for ‘no justice no peace’.” Mosby continued,
“This is a moment. This is your moment….Let’s ensure that we have peaceful and productive rallies that will develop structural and systemic changes for generations to come. You’re at the forefront of this cause. And as young people, our time is now.”
“This is a turning point in the world. This is a turning point in America,” a crowd member at Mosby’s announcement shouted, according to the Guardian.
Driver of the van in which Gray sustained his fatal injury, Officer Caeser Goodson, has been charged with the second degree murder of Freddie Gray. Mosby described Goodson’s failure to provide medical assistance to Gray and instead responding to an unrelated call was “grossly negligent”.
Five other police officers have also been charged with offences including manslaughter and misconduct. All six officers were in custody on Friday but have all since posted bail.
Baltimore Mayor Rawlings-Blake said, “there will be justice,” while reiterating, “no one in our city is above the law.”
Watch Marilyn Mosby’s announcement below.
Lead image by Win McNamee via Getty.
Via The Guardian.