Officer Charged in Prisoner Death Decides Against Jury Trial

BALTIMORE (AP) — There will be no trial by jury for the highest-ranking Baltimore police officer charged in the death of a young black man whose neck was broken inside a police van. Lt. Brian Rice has chosen to be tried instead by a judge, the same one who acquitted two fellow officers in Freddie Gray’s death.

Rice faces charges of manslaughter, assault, reckless endangerment and misconduct in office.

Judge Barry Williams acquitted Edward Nero and Caesar Goodson after bench trials last month. The first of the six officers to go to trial, William Porter, faced a jury and ended with a mistrial. He’ll be retried in September.

Gray’s neck was broken after officers left him handcuffed and shackled but unrestrained by a seat belt inside a metal transport compartment in Goodson’s van.

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