The death of Freddie Gray while in police custody has resulted in a huge back pay bonanza for one Baltimore police officer. Lt. Brian Rice, who was acquitted of all charges in Gray’s death, will receive an estimated $127K according to Baltimore’s Board of Estimates. The cash “represents the amount of salary that Mr. Rice would have earned for the period of May 1, 2015 through July 18, 2016.” The decision by the Board of Estimates must be voted on but it will more than likely be approved.
Rice was the highest ranking officer of the six accused in Gray’s death and was facing charges of involuntary manslaughter, reckless endangerment and misconduct in office. Last month, all remaining charges against the six officers accused in Gray’s death were dropped by the office of Baltimore State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby. The state had humiliating failures in previous trials for officers accused of causing the neck and spinal injuries that resulted in Gray’s after “rough ride” in a police van where he was unsecured. Many have stated that the charges leveled by Mosby were overreaching and on poor legal standing. There were three more trials that were set to take place that included: Officer Garrett Miller scheduled to begin on July 27; a retrial of Officer William Porter on Sept. 6; and Sgt. Alicia White’s trial was scheduled to begin Oct. 13.
In addition to Rice, the board approved $88,000 in back pay for Officer Caesar Goodson Jr., the police van’s driver. The responsibility for the death of Freddie Gray in police custody will now remain unresolved as apparently no officer is guilty. Gray’s death was ruled a homicide and the city of Baltimore erupted in protest, violence and looting as many Black residents were enraged over his death at the hands of police.