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On April 12, Freddie Gray, a 25-year-old African-American, was arrested in Baltimore for reportedly making eye contact with a police officer and then running away.

Without any probable cause for arrest, he was taken into custody and transported in a Baltimore Police van—handcuffed, feet shackled, unrestrained—for a ride to the station.

During the course of the ride, Mr. Gray’s spine was severed and when paramedics arrived Mr. Gray was in cardiac arrest, unable to breathe.

One week later, Mr. Gray was dead.

Decades worth of frustration, anger, and disillusionment sparked by deep tensions between local police and those they are supposed to serve erupted after Mr. Gray’s death into volcanic protests in the streets.

Longing for justice and demanding accountability, marchers and protesters made their point loud and clear — enough is enough.

On Friday, May 1, their call was answered: the state’s attorney for Baltimore City announced 28 charges against the 6 police officers involved in Mr. Gray’s arrest.

The charges include second-degree murder against the driver of the van, while other officers face charges of involuntary manslaughter, assault and illegal arrest.

While the filing of charges is only the first step on a long road to prosecution, the literal and symbolic power of the formal accusations inspired confidence in Baltimore’s and the Nation’s desire for equal justice.

Ronald G. Brower is a leading criminal defense attorney in Southern California. With over 30 years of experience, Attorney Brower has handled an extensive range of criminal matters. If you or someone you know is facing criminal charges, contact the Law Office of Ronald G. Brower today.

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