Caesar Goodson, Not Guilty

Here’s the story from the Baltimore Sun

Freddy Gray Trial post4

With precision, confidence and the no-nonsense style for which he is well known, Baltimore Circuit Judge Barry G. Williams on Thursday destroyed the state’s case against Officer Caesar Goodson, exposing it as a vessel of clay and smashing it to bits.

When Williams was finished reading his verdicts, there was nothing left.

In fact, the way the judge saw it, there was nothing there to begin with.

The judge’s conclusion: The death of Freddie Gray from spinal cord injuries sustained in the back of a police van was not caused by the criminal conduct of the Baltimore officer who drove that van. It was not murder. It was not manslaughter. Not reckless endangerment. It did not even rise to misconduct.

There was no evidence, Williams said several times, that Goodson knew or should have known that Gray needed medical attention on the morning of April 12, 2015, as Goodson drove Gray from his arrest in Sandtown-Winchester to the Western District police station.

Outcome of officers’ trials could impact prosecutor Marilyn Mosby’s political career, observers say

As for the claim that Goodson gave Gray a “rough ride” through West Baltimore, again Williams smashed away the state’s case. He called the use of the term “inflammatory,” and said the state never showed that Goodson held ill feelings toward Gray, or that he even knew him. There was no evidence that Gray spat at, kicked or bit Goodson or his fellow officers, conduct that might have provoked “rough ride” revenge.

That bit about Goodson’s stopping the van to check on Gray, perhaps concerned that his alleged “rough ride” had caused more injury to Gray than Goodson had intended?

Nothing there. Mere speculation. The stop lasted only 11 seconds, Williams said, hardly enough time for Goodson to assess an injury, and hardly the kind of “evidence” that shows malicious intent.

As in many instances with the state’s case, there was more insinuation than evidence. To hear the judge tell it, this wasn’t even a close call.

There was nothing to support the “rough ride” claim, and nothing to find Goodson guilty beyond a doubt of second-degree depraved-heart murder, the most serious charge against any of the officers accused in Gray’s death.

Williams, a former prosecutor, did not speak with anger; he did not sneer. Reading glasses on his nose, he presented his findings with sober command of facts and law.

Less than halfway through the reading, it was clear the judge was unimpressed with the state’s insinuations and speculations about Goodson’s behavior during the drive through West Baltimore. In the 40 minutes it took him to read his opinions, Williams used certain phrases, some repeatedly, that signaled the verdicts to come:

“No evidence that the defendant knew or should have known …”

“Evidence does not show …”

“Those facts have not been presented to this court …”

“The state failed to meet its burden …”

“The court finds that there is insufficient evidence …”

There wasn’t a syllable in favor of the prosecution.

About 25 minutes into his opinion, Baltimore State’s Attorney Marilyn J. Mosby appeared to shake her head, as in SMH, as in, “I can’t believe this.”

Mosby, who became an international sensation last May by charging six cops in Gray’s arrest and death, sat in the first row of the gallery, not at the trial table, as Williams went on with his point-by-point dissection of her case.

Of all the officers she charged, Goodson was Mosby’s biggest target. She won acclaim and instant celebrity for having the audacity to charge a cop with murder. But now, as Williams went on with his demolition — “The state presented no credible evidence to support that allegation” — Mosby’s star turn seemed like a distant speck.

Prosecutors Michael Schatzow and Janice Bledsoe had tried their best to convince Williams that Goodson’s actions (or inaction) rose to the criminal. At the trial table, they sat still for most of the reading, with Bledsoe slightly slouched in her chair, like a couple of law students having their final papers ripped apart by a professor in front of the entire class.

I should say Williams dismantled the case because that’s probably a more precise, and polite, word for the lesson in evidence and criminal liability he gave the state — and all of us — Thursday morning.

But he really did smash it to bits.

There were hugs on Goodson’s side of the courtroom after Williams declared him not guilty of all charges. The judge quickly adjourned the court and left the bench, as if he had other cases to tend to. And certainly he must. This is the city of Baltimore, after all, with a serious crime problem that deserves the full attention of the state’s attorney and her best prosecutors.

dan.rodricks@baltsun.com

_________________________________________________________________

This Judge is not a “Pro Cop, they can do no wrong.” Judge. Regardless of what some say about “He should have never been arrested.” or the knife was legal, Mosby said so.” The facts are these. Freddie Gray was in an “Open air drug market” doing what he did and does there (look up his arrest record) saw the police and took off running. Considering that Baltimore has a serious drug issue (1 in 10 are on heroin), the police trying to curb that by policing areas (like the one the incident happened in) is a “No brainer”. Gray was typical of the type of drug dealer known in that area, and he was well known to the police, due to his activities and prior arrests.

Freddy Gray Trial post7.jpg

Freddie Gray’s prior arrests

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Charging document

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The City Ordinance that they charged him under.

Marilyn Mosby knew the charge on the knife was valid in Baltimore (city ordinance), but said “It is legal in the state of MD” to get around that little indiscretion and make her paradigm seam legitimate. I’m not here to debate whether the ordinance should exist (I think those types of “Gotcha laws” are ridiculous), but the fact remains that this woman (Mosby) was playing a racial politics game, and was using this incident and those officers as expendables to further her political and racial agendas.

Freddy Gray Trial post1

I’ve been told the IIITurd is calling them “murderers”. My response is this. Coming from an ExCon who finds excuses to talk crap about anyone who works in law enforcement (I wonder which PD turned him down when he applied),  is it a surprise? Also consider that this is a guy who tries to impress people by saying silly things concerning his experience killing people.

Kerodin the murderer

“Statute of Limitations”….on murder? Uh…No. There is none on murder. 

Anyone ever get the impression that Kerodin is trying to draw your eye line away from some other scam they are doing, by using all the anti-gov, anti-cop rhetoric, and the accusations of white supremacy and NeoNazism?

JCD

American by BIRTH, Infidel by CHOICE

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15 thoughts on “Caesar Goodson, Not Guilty

  1. I’m not sure I read this article correctly, I may have missed some underlying intent, or veiled sarcasm, but did you really intend to say that no one should have been charged with killing Freddie Gray?

    • Yup, by all means, tell me who killed him? There’s a reason the cases have gone the way they have, and it’s not because the courts are covering for the police officers involved. That DA wants to burn those guys so bad it’s visibly coming out of her pores. Do some research and you’ll see what I’m talking about.

      • 1. Yes, I have always known that DA Mosby (Dumb-Ass) has been/is out to get the cops.
        2. Scumbag or not, everyone should get their day in court, not be taken out by some self-selected party.
        3. Freddie Gray was able to run away from the cops before he was arrested and put into the van.
        4. Somewhere between point A and point B (the jail) he suffered a severe spinal cord injury that subsequently killed him.
        These are the facts I know that I am basing my understanding on…
        Q1: What happened during that ride that resulted in those injuries?
        Q2: Whose responsibility was it to prevent such injuries? (They had a policy about seat-belting prisoners during transport, which was not followed. Someone was negligent.)

        Can we agree so far?

        • #2, Yes, you are exactly right, everybody deserves their day in court and if proven to have hurt him on purpose, they should receive the maximum penalty because they are supposed to protect life, not destroy it.
          #3, Are you saying you know he wasn’t trying to injure himself in the van? Donta Allen (other passenger) said on tape that Gray “was banging his head against the metal, like he was trying to knock himself out or something.” (something Allen then rescinded due to death threats from charm city’s finest when people found out what he’s said to the police). The Prosecutors told investigators not to investigate a claim that Gray had previously tried to hurt himself in police custody, why?
          #4, People commit suicide all the time, accidental or otherwise. Do you think he couldn’t have hurt himself beyond what he planned?(That is complete conjecture, but you need to think about it objectively). I can see someone trying to hurt themselves for a “payout” then their effort goes beyond what they intended.
          An BC Officer doesn’t sit in the back with those they transport. Have you seen how they sit in the back, it is sideways, with a divider about 4 inches from the knees of the subject. That means the officer has to reach across the knees of a guy who is acting out and violent to buckle him in. On top of that, the subject can unbuckle himself any time he wants. Short of tranquilizing him, what else could a single officer do in that situation?
          Let’s say they did buckle him in, and he unbuckled himself anyway and was banging his head on the barrier. There would have only been another officer’s word that he was buckled in originally, and who’d have believed him?
          There are no seat belts in school buses are there?
          Did the other subject being transported get hurt…at all? Did he even claim he was? Why not? If the ride was “SOOO Rough” that it damaged the spinal column of one subject, you’d think it would have at least given the other one (who was not buckled in, right?) a busted lip or a bruise. But Allen said, Gray “was banging his head against the metal, like he was trying to knock himself out or something.”, yet he was unhurt. Why?
          From Allen’s original statement about Gray’s actions, he experienced the same ride Gray did when the injuries occurred, yet he is without injury.
          He was acting out enough that they had to stop and put flex cuffs on his ankles, then lay him on his belly. That’s a clue, not a crime. They would not have gone to the extra effort to do that unless it was an “Out of the norm” transport. especially at 8:30 am.
          As to negligence for not seat belting is concerned, that is more administrative (since they had to lay him on his belly) than criminal. Considering that in MD law, during a personal injury accident case (lawsuit), the topic of seat belts cannot even be brought up in the trial. This is obviously the state legislature’s way of covering the liability that smaller municipal governments in the state would incur over accidents involving school buses.

          • I have no confidence at all in the ‘investigators’ that looked into this. Cops investigating cops. Yaright. The old adage of putting the fox in charge of the hen-house is appropriate here. The prosecutors are incompetent if they couldn’t put together a better case than they did. Relying on emotion to sway a judge/jury is a sure way to lose a case. But then, by relying on the information put together by the ‘investigators’ is just a joke of morbid stupidity.
            No, I have not seen a prisoner transport van. But, if all he had on him was a pocketknife, and I’m QUITE sure they searched him thoroughly since they knew him so well and knew he must have drugs on him, then he shouldn’t have been arrested in the first place! Then, there is the physics of Donta Allen being cuffed and belted. He would not have been hurt because his mobility was extremely limited. Gray however, was unrestrained from movement in the yaw, pitch, and roll axes of movement. The forces resulting from change-of-direction movement could certainly cause enough potential for serious physical damage. He was, after all, on his belly with his feet shackled and no way of being able to stabilize himself.

            This whole rotten affair has done nothing at all to allay my fears of and disgust at the entire political and law enforcement monolith that is currently passing itself off as the United States of America. For further education to anyone reading this and caring, read “National Police Misconduct Report” blog, by the CATO Institute, and BADGE ABUSE website, 2 or 3 times a week for a month, then get back to me.

            I love my country but I fear my government.

          • Because cops never go after bad cops, right? So what is expected, an Obama tribunal with them already knowing the outcome and making the pieces fit their paradigm? If you have no faith in anybody doing the right thing, this conversation is pointless. I do understand your dilemma however. From what I’ve seen of the van picks, the benches run along the outside edges of the van with a divider in the middle. As to Allen being seat belted, who said he was, and you still haven’t given a response to Allen’s original claim of Gray hurting himself. Sure, everyone should go and read those sites, but tell me this. How often do you hear about cops doing good things, day in day out? You generally don’t, do you? Is this because it doesn’t happen? What you normally hear is the sensationalist stories about bad cops doing bad things. As to this “I love my country but I fear my government.”, I say “Well duh!” 😉

  2. So far none of the cases have come up with any plausible evidence for a crime or crimes to have taken place. This is solely the prosecutors’ office and higher ups in the local pd trying to cash in on the political power of the BLM movement.

    That they sacrificed 6 officers on the altar of race-privilege is sick.

    May the officers and their families get huge civil settlements against the prosecutors and the captain who tossed them under the bus.

  3. Back again,
    Your point,
    “#3, Are you saying you know he wasn’t trying to injure himself in the van? Donta Allen (other passenger) said on tape that Gray “was banging his head against the metal, like he was trying to knock himself out or something.” Donta Allen wasn’t put into the van until the fourth stop. How would he know what went on before he got there. The coroner wrote that the fatal injuries were probably incurred between the second and third stops. Here…Baltimore Sun – Autopsy of Freddie Gray shows ‘high-energy’ impact … http://touch.baltimoresun.com/#section/-1/article/p2p-83850613/
    Which also goes to disprove there was no “rough ride” because Allen wasn’t even in the van at the time.

    Baltimore has a policy of securing passengers during transport. Yet he was not secured. Here …http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2015/04/30/freddie-gray-death-questions_n_7182428.html. Policies are made to prevent injury or damage. If such policies are routinely ignored, then why have the policy? If they can disregard a policy for “officer safety,” then how many ‘laws’ can they disregard for officer safety. If officer safety is more important than protecting and serving, get a different job. Oh by the way, the Supreme Court has ruled numerous times that police have no obligation to “protect” the citizenry.

    Here is a pretty concise timeline of events…http://www.vibe.com/2015/04/freddie-gray-facts-arrest-death/ to correlate with the other accounts. Cross-checking is a good idea.

    Finally, cops do get out of control, and I see no reason to believe that one foot patrol officer and two bicycle officers that pursued Gray “a long way” would not engage in a little “counseling” of the presumed-guilty-until-proven-innocent perp. Here…http://www.thedailysheeple.com/video-cop-slams-handcuffed-man-to-the-ground-for-not-sitting-like-a-dog_062016

    The last point I want to make is this… for your viewing pleasure…a lawyer and a cop both agree, do NOT talk to police. They lie to us, but it is against the ‘law’ to lie to them. Double standard, anyone? Here…
    http://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=don%27t+talk+to+police&qpvt=don%27t+talk+to+police&view=detail&mid=FA84B3FAD2000F47781DFA84B3FAD2000F47781D&FORM=VRDGAR

    And finally, my original questions remain. What happened on the ride, and who was responsible.

    • Are you saying Donta Allen’s statement isn’t true? Regardless of when he got on, the article says on the fourth stop,
      “‘Mr. Gray was found kneeling on the floor, facing the front of the van and slumped over to his right against the bench, and reportedly appeared lethargic with minimal responses to direct questions,’ the report says.”
      I don’t know why Allen said he made noises and banging, but he said it, and Gray was apparently not unconscious at that time.
      Here’s some statements to think about in that article,
      First stop, “After the doors were closed, he could be heard yelling and banging, “causing the van to rock,” the autopsy noted.”
      Yelling and banging
      Second stop, “Reportedly, Mr. Gray was still yelling and shaking the van,” the medical examiner wrote. “He was removed from the van and placed on the ground in a kneeling position, facing the van doors, while ankle cuffs were placed, and then slid onto the floor of the van, belly down and head first, reportedly still verbally and physically active.”
      Shows placement that the ME says he probably would not have been hurt in. Physically active.
      Fourth stop, “The assisting officer opened the doors and observed Mr. Gray lying belly down on the floor with his head facing the cabin compartment, and reportedly he was asking for help, saying he couldn’t breathe, couldn’t get up, and needed a medic,” the autopsy says. “The officer assisted Mr. Gray to the bench and the van continued on its way.”
      It’s called positional asphyxia. He couldn’t breathe on his belly, so the officer assisted him up to a position that he could breathe from. Why?
      “While it’s possible Gray was hurt while lying on the floor and moving back and forth, Allan determined that his body likely couldn’t have moved in that position with enough force to cause his injuries.”
      So they laid him on the floor after they had to restrain his ankles, and in a position he probably could not have been hurt (according to the ME), but he was probably hurt because he tried to get up?
      “Policies are made to prevent injury or damage. If such policies are routinely ignored, then why have the policy? If they can disregard a policy for “officer safety,” then how many ‘laws’ can they disregard for officer safety. If officer safety is more important than protecting and serving, get a different job.”
      I completely agree with this statement.

  4. I really am not sure about this whole case,actually though can end the drug/cop/prison/court cartels by just legalizing all drugs,yep,all,tis just a vicious merry go round that breeds crime and loss of tax payer money and rights in so called war on drugs.I want em cheap and legal,sure,keep driving under ect. a crime as then endangering others,otherwise,tis no ones elses business what someone does.

    You disagree fine,but then,outlaw the pharm industry as they kill more in this country then all so called illegal drugs,oh,and don’t be a hypocrite,outlaw booze and tobacco as they also kill more then all so called illegal drugs.

    I do not want my mom jumped/perhaps killed so a addict can get a fix,don’t want to pay for folks using drugs to be in jail(would also though say no benefits to folks using,tis your choice,sink or swim).

    Anyhow,this particular case seemed not very well looked into/investigated before DA locked herself in a corner saying would bring up charges,damn,this so called justice system is a mess on all levels,and the worst thing is,this is the best in the world,well,then the world is screwed.

    • “You disagree fine,but then,outlaw the pharm industry as they kill more in this country then all so called illegal drugs,oh,and don’t be a hypocrite,outlaw booze and tobacco as they also kill more then all so called illegal drugs.”
      “I do not want my mom jumped/perhaps killed so a addict can get a fix”
      Couldn’t agree more, but the flip side is those that end up hooked on heroin, Meth, etc. still don’t have the money (whether the drugs are cheap or not), because they can’t hold a job, and need money for the next fix, hence, they jump mom or pop.
      I don’t call it the justice system anymore, I call it the judicial system. There’s a reason for that.

      • I gave this a lot of thought and still say legalize it all.Yes,will still have hard core addicts that need to be dealt with if they engage in crimes,but,have them anyhow.I feel those determined will kill themselves quicker also with cheaper drugs,not a result I want,rather they dealt with issue of addiction and moved on with their life.A little of monies saved could go to real treatment/help for those who want it.

        This would though take a huge amount of monies involved in the equation out along with corruption ect. here and abroad,thus,lowering the amount of violence involved.Many folks dabble in drugs,and just move on with their lives,let em move forward without convictions ect. due to supposed crimes of getting high,not stealing/getting violent ect.We could then also afford to keep real violent criminals in jail were they can’t harm others.I would also say with the highly addictive drugs if cheap less of a incentive to get others involved/hooked to keep the monies flowing.

        I am distant friends with a few cops and both say that booze is their biggest issue with violence,both also agree that outlawing booze would make things much worse.One has a kid in public school system(a whole nother issue)and is horrified at the doping of kids legally in the grade schools,in his opinion one of the worst narcotic systems going and tis legal,will say he is working to change that to best of ability locally.On a side note,the ironic part is during these conversations we are pounding down caffeine,sigh….,yep,another drug.

        • How’s about we do what some Asian countries do and make the penalty for selling drugs “Death”. How many do you think would be willing to sell it that was the penalty? Better yet, how much do you think they’d charge for what they were selling if they knew getting caught meant death? For that matter, bring back public hangings. The modern generation loves reality TV, let’s give them “Reality”.

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