by Tramon Lucas, Campus News Edior
The jury in the trial of Baltimore Police Officer William Porter could not reach a verdict, as the judge declared a mistrial Wednesday.
Judge Barry G. Williams’ decision came a day after the jury, made up of seven women and five men, were deadlocked. The jury deliberated for three days and 16 hours.
Charges against Porter, 26, included involuntary manslaughter, misconduct in office, reckless endangerment and second-degree assault. The most serious charge was involuntary manslaughter, which carries a sentence of ten years.
A mistrial does not mean Porter was acquitted as the State’s Attorney Marylin J. Mosby could decide whether or not to retry Porter on either one or all four charges. Porter is the first of the six city police officers to be tried in the death of Freddie Gray.
Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake issued a statement on Judge Williams’ decision to declare a mistrial.
“This is our American system of justice. Twelve Baltimore residents listened to the evidence presented and were unable to render a unanimous decision,” said Rawlings-Blake.
“I urge everyone to remember that collectively, our reaction needs to be one of respect for our neighborhoods, and for the residents and business of our city,” she added.
There have been no signs of unrest in Baltimore City following the announcement.
There is no word yet that the possibility of the retrial of Porter would effect the other trials of the other officers involved.