The Latest: 1 charge dismissed at trial in black man’s death


BALTIMORE (AP) — The Latest on the trial of a Baltimore police officer accused of manslaughter in the death of a black man from injuries sustained while in a police van. (all times local):

2:45 p.m.

A judge has dropped an assault charged against a police officer charged in the death of a black man injured in a police transport van.

Baltimore Circuit Court Judge Barry Williams on Monday dismissed the second-degree assault charge against Lt. Brian Rice, the highest-ranking officer charged in the 2015 death of Freddie Gray.

Rice still faces charges of manslaughter, reckless endangerment and one misconduct charge. A second misconduct charge was dropped when the trial began last week.

Williams dropped the assault charge after the prosecution rested its case and Rice’s lawyers asked for the judge to acquit him.

The judge said the prosecution’s basis for the assault charge was that Rice used the van in the alleged assault. Williams ruled that because Rice didn’t drive the van, prosecutors had no evidence.

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12:05 p.m.

One of the officers cleared of charges in the death of a black man fatally injured in a police transport van is testifying at the trial of a fellow officer.

The bench trial of Lt. Brian Rice, the highest-ranking officer charged in the 2015 death of Freddie Gray, resumed Monday with testimony from Officer Edward Nero. Rice is facing manslaughter and other charges.

WBAL-AM reports (http://bit.ly/29PXavE ) that Nero testified there was a “hostile environment” where Gray was arrested and that Gray was partially cooperating.

Gray died a week after suffering a spinal injury in the van, touching off protests and rioting.

About a dozen protesters, the largest group since the trial began, stood outside the courthouse, some holding signs referencing the recent police killings of black men in Louisiana and Minnesota.

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