- The Washington Times - Thursday, June 23, 2016


A bit of advice to Team Mosby in Baltimore: Hit the eject button, watch “Groundhog Day” and stop living the past.

A third Baltimore Police officer charged in arrest and death of Freddie Gray has been acquitted of all charges, including murder, manslaughter and misconduct. The trial of the first officer, William Porter, ended in a deadlocked jury, and he will be retried. A second officer was acquitted in May. Three cases remain against three other officers.

State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby has a lot of explaining to do, and whether her prosecutorial team wins or loses those remaining cases easily appears to be, at this juncture, of considerable consequence.

The people of Baltimore rioted and ripped a part parts of their own city on the very day Gray’s remains were buried six feet under, and one of the messages the people of Baltimore saw and heard was that someone should be held accountable.

A grand jury decided that likely crimes had been committed in the death of Gray and that the people likely responsible for those crimes were six police officers.

Fair enough.

What’s telling now is that Mrs. Mosby’s prosecutorial team has failed to bring convictions in three cases, and the fourth case, against Lt. Brian Rice, is scheduled to begin July 5 with pretrial motions. That leaves Team Mosby less than two weeks to get their prosecutorial ducks in a row. Time might be on the prosecutors’ side if they were merely preparing for a one-and-done jury case. But they are not.

Team Mosby has to again strategize as if they are trying this case for the first time and expect to be handed a trial lawyer’s prize — a v-i-c-t-o-r-y.

So far, the case of Freddie Gray’s death is seemingly being handled as if it were an outtake of the ridiculously funny “Groundhog Day.”

Mrs. Mosby has had her share of trial victories, against killers and rapists, and, yes, she prosecuted some of those cases herself. The Gray death case is different. Not only are politics front and center, but police tactics and policies, and racial profiling are as well.

More important, though, is the fact that Team Mosby failed to persuade the jury in its first at bat with Officer Porter, and has failed to persuade Judge Barry G. Williams in the cases of Edward Nero and Caesar Goodson Jr.

Their evidence is not convincing.

Team Mosby clearly has to rethink how and whether the other cases will or will not proceed. It’s not too late — by all accounts Judge Williams is as focused on the law as Lady Justice is fair.

What also is weighing on Mrs. Mosby is where her professional law career heads from here. For certain, her campaign donors and supporters are doing the same.

Three strikes, and you’re out.

Deborah Simmons can be reached at [email protected]

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