Still no justice for Freddie Gray
Tell Obama: End violent and discriminatory policing
Yesterday, Freddie Gray’s family and the people of Baltimore were denied justice when Judge Barry G. Williams refused to hold Baltimore Police Officer Edward Nero accountable for Freddie’s death. This injustice sends a clear message: Black communities cannot rely on law enforcement to protect their lives or the justice system to protect them from police violence. President Barack Obama must intervene.
Please join us in calling on President Barack Obama to issue an executive order to direct the Department of Justice to enforce our civil rights laws more aggressively.
Since protesters have taken to the streets, there has been an upward trend in police officers being charged.1 However, even after State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby brought charges to the six officers responsible for Freddie's death, it is apparent that bringing charges does not guarantee justice. Of the officers being tried, two have not been convicted -Officer Nero, who was acquitted earlier today and Officer William Porter, who is being retried.2
Police departments and our justice system claim that they are working to strengthen their relationships with Black communities, yet they rarely demonstrate that they can—and will—police their own. Freddie's family received a $6.4 million settlement - the city's acknowledgement that his death was a direct result of police violence.3 While a guilty verdict for Edward Nero would not have solved all the challenges facing Black communities in Baltimore, it would have been an important step towards justice for Freddie Gray.
There is an epidemic of racial bias, police violence, and a lack of accountability in our country's police forces. The federal government could, at the direction of President Obama, significantly change these conditions — but it's not happening yet and won't happen unless we raise our voices.
Rashad, Arisha, Scott, Enchanta and the rest of the ColorOfChange Team
1. “The Number of Cops Indicted for Murder Spikes Upward,” The Atlantic, 08-19-2015
2. “A Freddie Gray Mistrial,” The New Yorker, 12-16-2015
3. "The Latest: Attorney: Freddie Gray Family Respects Verdict," ABC News, 05-23-2016 http://act.colorofchange.org/go/6337?t=10&akid=5842.1942551.bBVq4s
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