|USA – MD – City of Baltimore Police
(Photo credit: conner395)
Forty-six-year old Baltimore resident Anthony Anderson died last month while in police custody. The cops said he choked on drugs, but his family wasn’t buying it. This week, the Office of the Medical Examiner ruled the case a homicide.
According to CBS Baltimore, police say the case is still under investigation and only after their investigation is over will the city state’s attorney determine if any criminal charges are warranted. For anyone not related to the police department—this isn’t good enough.
Anderson was leaving a store with his family on the evening of Sept. 21 when he was stopped by officers investigating drugs. Reports indicate witnesses saw undercover narcotics officers grab Anderson and throw him to the ground. There are reports of him being kicked and laughed at by police. Some witnesses say the police tried to prop up his unresponsive body when removing him from the scene to cause less alarm.
But the alarm was already raised. The incident happened in front of his children, his mother, and his 2 and 9-year old grandchildren.
Official cause of death: homicide—“massive internal bleeding from blunt force injuries, including a ruptured spleen and multiple fractured ribs.”
The cops initially said Anderson had choked on drugs he was concealing. But a leaked autopsy report indicated he had no drugs in his system.
“I’m hoping that this officer will not be treated any differently than anyone else who murders someone in the streets of Baltimore City, because that’s what this family and that’s what I consider it to be,” said an attorney representing Anderson’s family.
But too often we’ve seen police get away with crimes that would have sent a regular citizen to prison. Why the seeming disparity? There are several possible reasons, including the fact that a prosecutor knows it will be harder to convict a cop so they are less likely to bring charges, the massive support that is usually behind a police officer regardless of the evidence against them, and the fact that police officers are usually provided lawyers from their local union to represent them against any charges.
What will happen in this case is anyone’s guess at this point, but one thing is for certain—a lack of criminal charges will only deepen the rift between the police of the city and the people they serve.
If you are charged with a drug crime, an assault offense, or any other criminal charge, contact me today. I can offer a free consultation and we can discuss your legal options.
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