Radio Sputnik’s Loud & Clear sat down with Eddie Conway, Baltimore-based journalist, former political prisoner and Black Panther, and Sean Blackmon, an organizer with Stop Police Terror Project DC, about the trial and how the prosecution gave the appearance of bungling the case on purpose.
Conway said that he is not surprised by the verdict, "only surprised by the fact that they were indicted in the first place, and that there was some semblance of a trial, in the second place." He added that, in cases like these, "there’s very rarely an indictment, and a conviction is even more rare, and almost no one ever goes to prison. So it’s not unusual: it’s business as usual."
— jesseWilliams. (@iJesseWilliams) July 27, 2016
Referring to Gray’s violent death, restrained and fatally injured in the back of a police van, Loud & Clear host Brian Becker asked Blackmon, "What does it tell black America that, again, police walk free?"
Blackmon pointed out that the nature of the non-guilty verdict leaves citizens scratching their hands in confusion. "Freddie Gray is dead," Blackmon pointed out, "but we’re told that, legally speaking, no one killed him."
Blackmon also offered that a result of the trial will be that people will understand that endemic racism in the United States is more than skin deep.
"I think it’s important to point out,” he stated, ”that of the six officers who were responsible for Freddie Gray’s death, three of them were black, and this happened in Baltimore, which is a city that had a black mayor and a black police chief, and, on a nationwide level, a black attorney general and a black president. So it shows that you don’t have to be white to be in service to white supremacy."
Baltimore City State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby stated following the trial:
"…after much thought and prayer it has become clear to me that not being able to work with an independent investigatory agency at the very start, without having a say in the election of whether our case is preceded in front of a judge or a jury, without communal oversight on policing in this community, without reforms in the criminal justice system, we could try this case a 100 times, and cases just like it, and we would still end up with the same result."
Conway stated that, while he agreed with Mosby’s words, he does not feel that they were sincere.
"I believe the sentiment is correct. I believe the person that delivered it might have been disingenuous." he suggested. Conway feels that Mosby, "mis-indicted the officers, and all of them were going to walk away. That’s why you don’t actually have an uprising in the city now, because people in Baltimore, especially in the poor communities, didn’t expect anything else other than this. I think her statement is to exonerate herself. I don’t believe her level of anger except to divert the attention away from her and to make her seem as if she was championing our cause, when, in reality, she let all of them go."