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Freddie Gray’s spinal injury caused by head hitting back of police van, ABC reports

Ravens-Baltimore

Former Baltimore Ravens NFL football player Ray Lewis hugs 17-year-old Azariah Bratton-Bey Jr., a senior running back on Frederick Douglass High’s football team. The players visited two schools in downtown Baltimore in an effort to quell tensions caused by riots that ravaged the city. (Kenneth K. Lam/Baltimore Sun/Associated Press)

“I understand the frustration; I understand the sense of urgency,” Batts said. “That is why we have finished it a day ahead of time.”

State’s attorney doing own investigation

Batts said police would keep probing at the direction of the state’s attorney while Mosby stressed that her office is doing its own investigation.

“We are not relying solely on their findings but rather the facts that we have gathered and verified. We ask for the public to remain patient and peaceful and to trust the process of the justice system,” her statement said.

Baltimore=protests-new-york

People in other cities came out to protest Wednesday in a sign of solidarity with Baltimore and to highlight the issue of police brutality, especially against black men. (Andrew Kelly/Reuters)

Batts left it to Deputy Commissioner Kevin Davis to release yet another official timeline of what happened to Gray after his arrest nearly three weeks ago.

In all, the previously undisclosed stop now makes four stops between the time officers arrested Gray and his arrival at a police station, where he was found unresponsive. He was hospitalized in critical condition and died a week later.

Batts and Davis said nothing more about when or how investigators obtained the previously undisclosed video or learned about the additional stop. However, five of the six officers gave statements to investigators the day Gray was injured, and as recently as a week ago, the stop was not part of the official timeline, suggesting investigators learned of it later.

4th van stop not previously disclosed

Gray was arrested after he made eye contact with an officer and ran. Officers chased him down and handcuffed him behind his back. Bystander videos recorded police loading him, dragging his legs, into one of two metal compartments in the back of the van.

The family of Mr. Gray wants answers. I want answers. Our entire city deserves answers. We will remain vigilant on this path to justice.

Police completed their investigation into the death of Freddie Gray a day earlier than planned Thursday and delivered it to the chief prosecutor in Baltimore, who pleaded for patience and peace while she decides whether to bring charges.

But a local ABC affiliate reported that the preliminary findings of the medical examiner suggest Gray’s injury was caused when his head slammed into a bolt at the back of the police van.Law enforcement sources reportedly told ABC’s WJLA that the preliminary investigation found no evidence that the 25-year-old was fatally injured during his videotaped arrest.

Earlier Thursday, the deputy police commissioner revealed a new detail that raises still more questions about what the officers involved have told investigators: the van carrying Gray to the police station made a previously undisclosed stop that was captured on a “privately owned camera.”

#PCBatts provides an update on the status of the Freddie Gray investigation http://t.co/K0ke3EdzUT

— @BaltimorePolice

State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby must review the evidence, consider charges and decide how to move forward in the death of Gray, who suffered severe spinal injuries at some point after he tried to run from police on April 12, and died a week later.

Police Commissioner Anthony Batts took no questions and provided no details about the report, which he said represents the work of more than 30 investigators.

Former Baltimore Ravens NFL football player Ray Lewis hugs 17-year-old Azariah Bratton-Bey Jr., a senior running back on Frederick Douglass High’s football team. The players visited two schools in downtown Baltimore in an effort to quell tensions caused by riots that ravaged the city. (Kenneth K. Lam/Baltimore Sun/Associated Press)

“I understand the frustration; I understand the sense of urgency,” Batts said. “That is why we have finished it a day ahead of time.”

State’s attorney doing own investigation

Batts said police would keep probing at the direction of the state’s attorney while Mosby stressed that her office is doing its own investigation.

“We are not relying solely on their findings but rather the facts that we have gathered and verified. We ask for the public to remain patient and peaceful and to trust the process of the justice system,” her statement said.

Baltimore=protests-new-york

People in other cities came out to protest Wednesday in a sign of solidarity with Baltimore and to highlight the issue of police brutality, especially against black men. (Andrew Kelly/Reuters)

Batts left it to Deputy Commissioner Kevin Davis to release yet another official timeline of what happened to Gray after his arrest nearly three weeks ago.

In all, the previously undisclosed stop now makes four stops between the time officers arrested Gray and his arrival at a police station, where he was found unresponsive. He was hospitalized in critical condition and died a week later.

Batts and Davis said nothing more about when or how investigators obtained the previously undisclosed video or learned about the additional stop. However, five of the six officers gave statements to investigators the day Gray was injured, and as recently as a week ago, the stop was not part of the official timeline, suggesting investigators learned of it later.

4th van stop not previously disclosed

Gray was arrested after he made eye contact with an officer and ran. Officers chased him down and handcuffed him behind his back. Bystander videos recorded police loading him, dragging his legs, into one of two metal compartments in the back of the van.

The family of Mr. Gray wants answers. I want answers. Our entire city deserves answers. We will remain vigilant on this path to justice.

— @MayorSRB

Police earlier said the van stopped once so that officers could put Gray in “leg irons” because he had become “irate,” stopped again because the driver asked for an additional unit to check on Gray’s condition, and then again to put an additional prisoner in the van’s other compartment before arriving at the station.

Baltimore-riots-curfew

As the city prepared for a third night under curfew, there were efforts to move past the violence and destruction of Monday night’s riots, above, which left behind several damaged buildings and businesses. (Eric Thayer/Reuters)

Now police are saying an additional stop was made before the driver asked officers to check on his condition. They said nothing about this stop other than its location — at what appears to be a desolate intersection with three vacant lots and a corner store. Last week, Batts had said the second prisoner told investigators the driver did not speed, make sudden stops or “drive erratically” during the trip, and that Gray was “was still moving around, that he was kicking and making noises” up until the van arrived at the police station.

Mayor promises justice for Gray family

Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake sought to dispel any notion that the police report would bring a swift and public conclusion to the case.

“Whatever time the state’s attorney’s office needs to make that determination, the family wants to get it right,” she said Wednesday after meeting with Gray’s family and legal team.

The mayor of Baltimore says in an emotional speech that the city will get justice for Freddie Gray.

VIDEO: @paulhuntercbc shares some of the personal stories behind the protests in #Baltimore http://t.co/77WxazCq56 pic.twitter.com/gbRgr4b82K

— @CBCTheNational

“If, with the nation watching, three black women at three different levels can’t get justice and healing for this community, you tell me where we’re going to get it in our country,” she said, referring to herself, the prosecutor investigating the case and newly sworn in Attorney General Loretta Lynch.

Lynch oversees the Justice Department, which is also investigating Gray’s death.

The mayor says she tried to reform the police department even before Gray’s death and the agency has made improvements, lowering the number of police shootings and excessive force complaints.

Protests over Gray’s death spread Wednesday night to other cities including Boston, New York, Washington and Ferguson, Mo., making it clear that tensions over the case are far from subsiding. The demonstrations were mostly peaceful, but police made many arrests, including at least 60 in New York.

Gray’s death was only the latest high-profile case of a black man dying as the result of a police encounter. Similar protests erupted over the killings of Michael Brown in Ferguson; Eric Garner in New York last year, and Walter Scott in South Carolina. Scott was shot in the back by a white officer who has since been charged with murder.

For businesses, rebuilding will be tough

In Baltimore on Thursday, there were efforts to move past the destructive riots of Monday night that left behind several burned out buildings and ransacked businesses. The coach and several players from the Baltimore Ravens football team, including former star linebacker Ray Lewis, visited two Baltimore schools Thursday to help quell tension.

In addition to unloading food and toiletries from trailers, players spoke to students at Frederick Douglass High School and Matthew A. Henson Elementary School.

SmallBiz Baltimore Rebuilding

Many small businesses were devastated by the damage inflicted in the riots and will have difficulty rebuilding because most don’t have the cash reserves of larger companies. (Matt Rourke/Associated Press)

Several Douglass students were involved in confrontations with police on Monday, when violence escalated after Gray’s funeral.

Business owners, meanwhile, were still struggling to assess the damage caused by the riots.

Rebuilding after riots is difficult and sometimes impossible for small businesses because most don’t have the cash reserves of larger companies

About 200 small businesses were unable to open the day after the violence, Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan said.

It takes a long time in people’s collective memory to remember these are vibrant, safe communities worth investing in.- Derek Hyra, a professor of public administration, American University

The predominantly black neighborhood that took the brunt of the damage had already been abandoned by many businesses, with vacant storefronts on every block of North Avenue and many boarded-up homes on side streets.

The stigma attached to a riot-torn area is another obstacle for small businesses, making banks and investors uneasy about committing money, said Derek Hyra, a professor of public administration and policy at American University.

“It takes a long time in people’s collective memory to remember these are vibrant, safe communities worth investing in,” he said.

Many stricken businesses are owned by immigrants — about half by Koreans, Hogan said.

Cities hit by riots in the 1960s have taken decades to recover. Rebuilding is still taking place in Newark, New Jersey, and Washington, D.C., and parts of Detroit have only recently started their recovery.

Source:: http://www.cbc.ca/news/world/freddie-gray-s-spinal-injury-caused-by-head-hitting-back-of-police-van-abc-reports-1.3056066?cmp=rss

      

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