It may just be me getting old and cynical but today on this Freddie Gray case I witnessed the government kick the can down the street 4 or 5 years — and it was so obvious, I was amazed.
Let me just say, prosecutor’s have to be very careful. Rushing to judgment, not examining all the evidence, not looking at different theories, not having forensics, these are the types of things judges are picky as hell about (not to mention defense attorneys) and eventually the higher courts look at everything in a case like this with a magnifying glass.
Which is where this prosecutor in Baltimore, Marilyn Mosby, is off on the complete wrong foot — or — doing this can kicking routine on purpose, which is what I suspect.
I’ll let Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke explain it as he did on Fox News.
He’s referring here to Mosby’s very emotional press conference where she triumphantly made the announcement of these arrests and charges. Her tone alone at that press conference will cause the Maryland Special Courts of Appeals upset stomachs and sleepless nights for the next month. But I digress. Back to Sherriff Clarke’s take on the news conference and arrests.
“She said, I hear the voices.” Clarke began, “She’s not supposed to hear anything as she reviews this case, that is not consistent with the rule of law, and our system of justice.”
Of course Clarke it completely right about this and it’s going to get worse for the State, and next he explains why.
“I’m an experienced and a veteran homicide detective. I’ve had — I’ve participated in charging conferences. There is no way I have ever gotten a criminal charge within 24 hours after taking over all the reports and evidence to a prosecutor.”
Clarke is right of course and I can’t imagine any way the city defends this timeline, especially after admitting how little data they had to begin with. Clarke continues below.
“A prosecutor who is thorough needs several days to sift through hundreds of pages of reports. They usually want to interview some of the witnesses themselves, in person, and they have to sift through all of the evidence, piece by piece, and they have to wait for some of the forensics evidence to conclude, to come back and that’s why I say on a minimum, three to four days. She just got this case yesterday. This is political activism. She’ll never prove this beyond a reasonable doubt.”
Now of course, Sheriff Clarke is a Sherriff (black) and sheriffs tend to see things from the paramilitary point of view, however, the algorithm was clear here.
Don’t charge and do a thorough investigation, rioting happens. Charge, rush in, announce it publicly and make statements that are prejudicial and who cares because the violence stops and the more reckless you are, the better chance the officers eventually walk down the road in 4 or 5 years, during the appeals process happening at a court in Annapolis. At that point, sweeping this under the rug at long last, will be an inside the A section story or no problem.
Of course this is highly unethical and grossly unfair to these 5 men and 1 woman officer who’s lives and careers (and probably marriages) are ruined, but I’m sure the Baltimore pols have thought of that and disregarded it just as quickly, — if ethics mattered to this crew down at Baltimore City Hall, we wouldn’t be where we are now.