Baltimore Cop Cleared in Freddie Gray Death

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BALTIMORE — ┬áBaltimore police Officer Edward Nero has been found not guilty of all charges for his part in the events leading to the death of Freddie Gray. Judge Barry Williams announced his decision Monday after a bench trial. Nero was charged with second-degree intentional assault, two counts of misconduct in office and reckless endangerment.

When a Baltimore judge on Monday decides the fate of one of six officers charged in the Freddie Gray case, a city that seethed with unrest over the death of the 25-year-old prisoner will get its long-awaited first verdict.

The line of questioning by Judge Barry Williams during trial last week could signal the final outcome. He strongly challenged prosecutors’ claim that the takedown and subsequent arrest of Gray without probable cause amounted to a criminal assault.

The verdict in the bench trial comes more than a year after Gray’s death on April 19, 2015, became a symbol of the black community’s distrust of police and triggered days of violent protests. Gray was black. Three of the officers charged are white, three are black.

Closing arguments in the trial of Police Officer Edward Nero — the second officer to be tried — concluded Thursday.

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