On Tuesday, presiding judge Barry G. Williams permitted Lt. Brian Rice‘s trial to move forward. Opening arguments will begin on Thursday at 9:30 a.m, according to The Baltimore Sun.
Lt. Brian Rice, 42, the highest ranking officer charged in Freddie Gray‘s death, elected for a bench trial over a jury, continuing the precedent set by two officers before him, Edward Nero and Caesar Goodman. Both Nero and Goodman were acquitted of all charges against them.
During Tuesday’s pre-trial hearing, the judge denied a request by the defense to dismiss the indictments against Rice, including manslaughter, reckless endangerment, assault, and misconduct in office. He is currently free on $350,000 bail, The Sun writes.
According to The Washington Post, Judge Williams also said prosecutors committed a discovery violation by requesting to submit 4,000 pages of evidence gathered to show Rice was inadequately trained.
The Post writes:
The judge did criticize prosecutors for waiting until just days before trial to turn over some 4,000 pages of training documents from Rice’s time in the Baltimore Police Department. Prosecutors said they requested the documents late and shared them with the defense as soon as they received them. But the judge ordered the documents excluded from the case, saying the late disclosure amounted to a discovery violation.
According to The Baltimore Sun, the prosecution will be allowed to cite the agency’s general orders and Rice’s police academy training.
Rice was on bike patrol and phoned in backup when Gray, 25, fled police near the Gilmore Homes on April 12, 2015. Prosecutors allege Rice failed to secure Gray’s seat belt in the back of the van during his arrest. Gray died a week later after sustaining a fatal neck injury.
SOURCES: The Baltimore Sun, The Washington Post | PHOTO CREDIT: Getty
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