Judge rules prosecutors withheld evidence, cannot use training documents in Rice trial
BALTIMORE (WBFF) -- Once again, the judge assigned to the Baltimore City Police officers' trials in the Freddie Gray death case has said that prosecutors withheld evidence.
Judge Barry Williams brought up the latest discovery violation committed by prosecutors during a pretrial hearing on Tuesday for Lieutenant Brian Rice, the fourth Baltimore City Police officer to stand trial for the death of Freddie Gray.
Prosecutors on Tuesday acknowledged they did not turn over 4,000 pages of what they described as "in-service training documents" until a week before the start of the trial.
They blamed the delay in submitting the documents on City Police, who they said had custody of the paperwork.
However, Judge Williams blamed prosecutors and ruled that they will be unable to use any the 4,000 pages in the case.
Professor David Jaros at the University of Baltimore Law School said he believes the ruling could impact the case.
"A critical part of the prosecution's case is that Lieutenant Rice acted improperly based on his training and, of course, preventing the prosecution from bringing out evidence about his in-service training makes it a little bit harder," Jaros said.
However, University of Maryland Law Professor Douglas Colbert said he is not convinced.
"Judging from the prosecutor's argument, I would conclude those 4,000 pages do not amount to that much relevant material to their case."
Rice informed the court that he wants a judge, rather than a jury, to decide his fate. Testimony is set to begin on Thursday.
Officers Caesar Goodson and Edward Nero were found not guilty of all charges and William Porter, the first to be tried, had his trial end with a hung jury. Both Goodson and Nero also chose bench trials.