Police Disciplinary Hearing: Lawyers focus on why Gray wasn't buckled in van
BALTIMORE (AP) - The highest-ranking Baltimore police officer who responded to the arrest of a man who later died in custody didn't give a reason to investigators about why he didn't buckle Freddie Gray into a seatbelt in the back of a van as required.
Detective Sgt. Thomas Curtis testified Monday at the start of administrative disciplinary proceedings in the case of Lt. Brian Rice, who is fighting for his job.
Curtis says when Rice was asked why he didn't put a seatbelt around Freddie Gray during an interview, he responded that "he just didn't."
But Michael Davey, Rice's lawyer, says the department failed to properly inform officers of a new mandate requiring seatbelts. That policy was only days old when Gray was arrested in April 2015. Davey also says shift commanders like Rice had discretion on whether to use a seatbelt.