In police trials like this, people look for solutions to grand moral and historical issues. But criminal prosecution is about the guilt of an individual. If you're looking for answers to society's problems, or just someone to blame for all the wrongs in the world, a criminal trial isn't the right place.
Even among those who love the idea of prosecuting cops, ideologues who lap up and purr any time they hear "progressive" talk, I've yet to hear anybody actually defend Mosby's choices or competency. Even those who don't trust cops (sometimes for good reason) may have to accept that these cops are innocent.
Here is Croyder's take on the current trial of Officer Porter (the first of six officers to be tried). She wrote this op-ed in the Sun from back in May. But her similar blog piece throws some extra punches.
A later piece, also from May:
I already discussed Mosby's failure to use the important tools available to her that any competent prosecutor would have taken. I was willing to believe that this reckless failure stemmed from inexperience.From June:
But her press conference was troubling in how far it strayed from a prosecutor's duty. She addressed herself to protesters across the country, embraced their cause, called for sociological change, promised justice for the young and for Freddie Gray.
These words, together with her demeanor, drew praise from newspaper editors, TV reviewers and many in the public. But they were the words of a politician, not a prosecutor. As a prosecutor her performance was awful, violating her ethical duty and generating suspicion that her charges were political.
Mosby is in the wrong office. Once elected as State's Attorney, she had to abide by ethical rules that she repeatedly ignores.... Politicians can lead wherever they choose. But unless prosecutors are bulwarks against politics in the criminal justice system, that system fails.
Death by no seat belt or medical delay would ordinarily be a case headed for civil court....I said much the same thing. It's not just that cops were worried about making a terrible mistake and then being prosecuted. It's the legitimate fear Baltimore cops have of being criminal charged for doing their job correctly.
What to me remains most indicative of Mosby's mindset is her pursuit of the two arresting officers, who we now know for certain had nothing to do with Gray's death. On duty after Mosby's office urged greater crime suppression in that exact location, these officers justifiably pursued someone who fled from them on sight, and with ample legal precedent behind them, took him down and patted for weapons. By turning this into a crime, Mosby has told all police officers that they cannot do their jobs as they have been trained to do them.
Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake and [now former] Police Commissioner Leonard Batts are taking all the heat for the crime spike since Mosby charged the six officers. No one locally wants to point the finger at Mosby. I will. It's mostly on her.
The decision of Judge Barry Williams to keep the trials of the six police officers charged in the death of Freddie Gray in Baltimore City demonstrates that judges, too, are human.December 3:
Legally speaking, Judge Williams should have moved the trials out of Baltimore.... If the top prosecutor, whose sole job it is to follow the facts and the evidence, was influenced by the unrest, wouldn’t the citizens of Baltimore be similarly influenced?
By deciding to keep the case in Baltimore, Judge Williams has created a substantial argument for reversal, something that trial judges try – or should try – to avoid for the sake of all parties.
Judge Williams has proved that he will work hard. A number of lazy Baltimore judges would have moved the case just to get out of the work this case entails. Nevertheless, those lazy judges would have been legally correct.
In the first year of her administration, with a million issues to confront, Mosby is being paid over $238,000 to watch a trial. It doesn't take a genius to figure out why: she has staked her reputation on this case, and she wants the judge and jurors to know it, to influence them by her presence. Never in my two decades as a Baltimore prosecutor did I see the State's Attorney watch a trial. They had too much work to do.December 10:
Mosby and her team lack the judgment, priorities and experience needed to run an effective prosecutor's office anyway. Mosby was a run-of-the-mill prosecutor who became a run-of-the-mill insurance attorney before election to the largest prosecutor's office in the state.Here's her most recent post:
Her own probable cause statement did not support her sensational indictments. The autopsy report didn't either, despite it's legal conclusion (that was clearly influenced by Mosby.) And now the facts reveal that not only are the charges not provable beyond a reasonable doubt, but the officers are actually innocent.When Mosby loses and the officer walk free, then what? Bad leadership has consequences.
In any event, there is no such crime as "homicide by no seat belt." If one wants to call it negligence -- despite other police departments (not to mention other transit vehicles, like buses) not using seat belts -- then fine. That's why the city paid the Gray family over $6 million. But there was no police brutality or a criminal disregard for Gray's safety.