Baltimore Mayor: 'Justice is not a verdict, it's a process'
BALTIMORE (WBFF) -- Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake sat down with CNN on Wednesday, after the remaining officer trials in the Freddie Gray case were dropped.
Rawlings-Blake, secretary of the Democratic National Committee, is currently in Philadelphia where she is serving as temporary secretary of the Democratic National Convention.
“If you take a look at the facts and if you actually read what the judge has said in the previous cases it’s not a surprising announcement,” Rawlings-Blake said. “I think the way she made the announcement is surprising because I’ve said all along, justice is not a verdict, it’s a process and the process allows the defendant to choose whether they go before a jury or a judge. It’s no different in a police case than if any one of us were charged with a crime. That doesn’t make it unjust and it doesn’t make the system rigged. That is our justice process.”
Mayor Rawlings-Blake called the Baltimore City State’s Attorney's move to drop charges against the remaining three officers a “wise decision, because the judge has found in the past that the cases were thin.”
She noted that she still has confidence in the State's Attorney.
"I'm optimistic that everything that we do in life, whether it turns out the way we want it or not, is an opportunity for growth and to learn," Rawlings-Blake said. "I’ve certainly learned from the challenges that I've faced but I have never -- and will never -- use my position to give the impression to the community that they should not have confidence in the people who have sworn to serve them."
Baltimore Police Commissioner Kevin Davis has also weighed in, calling Wednesday's announcement from Mosby, "a thoughtful decision that will help move our City forward."
Once the charges were dropped the judge's gag order was no longer in effect and Mosby took to the podium to break her silence.
"My professional role in this matter is plain," said Mosby. "To seek justice on behalf of an innocent 25-year-old man."
She also decried, "a reluctance and an obvious bias that was consistently exemplified not by the entire Baltimore Police Department but by individuals within the Baltimore Police Department at every stage of the investigation."
Baltimore FOP President Gene Ryan responded to those remarks at a briefing later in the afternoon.
“The comments made today about our officers by Ms. Mosby were outrageous, and uncalled for and simply not true,” Ryan said. “The detectives assigned to the case conducted a very thorough investigation into the very tragic death of Freddie Gray but the State’s Attorney simply could not accept the evidence that was presented. She had her own agenda.”
In a written statement released earlier in the day, Rawlings-Blake noted that the officers will still face an administrative review.
According to Baltimore Police spokesperson T.J. Smith, pay for the officers will now be restored and they will be on administrative duties while an administrative review is conducted by the Montgomery County Police Department -- with the assistance of the Howard County Police Department.