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Judge Rules Porter Must Testify in Trial of Other Baltimore Officers Charged in Freddie Gray Case

January 07, 2016  | 

Circuit Court Judge Barry Williams denied a motion by Officer William Porter's attorneys to quash a subpoena for him to appear at the trial of fellow Officer Caesar Goodson trial, the second of six Baltimore police officers to face trial in the death of Freddie Gray.

Williams said Porter will be compelled to testify. Porter's attorney, Gary Proctor, filed an injunction Thursday with the Court of Special Appeals in Annapolis to block the order to compel his testimony in Goodson's trial.

Porter was called to the stand Wednesday prior to the ruling and invoked his Fifth Amendment rights against self-incrimination. Williams warned prosecutors if Porter testifies in the Goodson trial, it could impact their ability to retry him after Porter's case ended in a mistrial in December.

Should Porter testify, Williams said, the state has been placed on notice that they have an interesting burden to show they did not use the testimony in any shape or form.

Williams said Porter's Fifth Amendment rights would not be violated in his retrial if granted immunity in Goodson's trial. Williams said this decision is uncharted territory as witnesses granted immunity usually have pleaded to lesser charges or had charges dropped, WBAL TV reports.

Comments (18)

Displaying 1 - 18 of 18

Robert @ 1/7/2016 3:16 PM

Things are starting to heat up in Baltimore.
First, I feel a crime was committed by the police...I think proving may be another matter. That said, Porter's Defense about why he didn't tighten the seat belt was laughable!!!
Next, I feel the DA grossly 'overcharged' this case. DAs typically do this, but it is almost unheard of that a LEO is overcharged. To me that abuse of justice (overcharging) tells me that maybe the Blue Wall is starting to crumble.
As for this case, I think the Judge summed it up. If Porter is compelled to testify, the DA will basically not be able to introduce any new evidence in the next trial. So, this leads me to 1 of 3 conclusions:
1. The DA knows the Porter case is a loser...and is willing to let him walk (perhaps the 1st jury was skewed towards acquittal).
2. The DA feels that with a different jury, the case against Porter is a winner (the jury was skewed towards guilty)..needs nothing
3. The DA is close to flipping someone...and this is a carro.

Robert @ 1/7/2016 4:18 PM

Yea yea yea everyone look at me. I'm the first one to post. This is so cool. I get to make fun of the police on a police website. My mom would be so proud of me.

OK @ 1/7/2016 4:32 PM

What crime was committed exactly? Policy and law are different animals.

Lt Roy Smith-ret @ 1/7/2016 5:52 PM

Policy and the the murder trial against deputy-sheriff Robert Shaffer, 1970, the prosecution was able to enter that deputy-Shaffer used .357 mag bullets instead of department policy approved .38's. It was allowed to show a negligent state of mind. Find it: whenlawmenlie. And the court would not allow that deputy-Shaffer could have used his 12 gauge with 00 buck. And at 5 feet you tell me which one would have been the most lethal.

mtarte @ 1/7/2016 5:57 PM

Robert, what crime? As far as rarely overcharging, that's a load of BS. I've seen it happen too many times when a cop was a accused of a crime. Usually the juries see through the BS and have either acquitted the officer outright or, in a particular case involving the death of a suspect, came back with involuntary manslaughter when 1st degree murder was charged. As far as the Baltimore case, I suspect your first conclusion is the correct one. I have never seen a murder charge against any suspect as fast as the state's attorney brought them against the Baltimore cops. As far as you the first to post, congratulations. As far as your understanding of policing, how about becoming a cop and then coming back with some learned opinions?

Robert @ 1/7/2016 6:29 PM

When acting in an official matters...policy and law are almost the same.
In this case it is obvious that the LEO on the scene were negligent...the question the jury will decide is whether this is simply negligence or criminal. As stated, I think this could go either way.
To your BS comments about 'become a cop' or you can't criticize...I suggest you understand how America works.
LEO are public servants...they work for every taxpayer in this country. LEO are not some super class of citizen that is immune from criticism or questioning. LEO are in the customer service business...and the customer is always right. If you can't take the heat, get out of the kitchen..and get a new job!
As I stated I think 85-95% of police do a good or great job...but the other 5-15% needs to be weeded out...and with the current union contracts/LEBOR, that is not happening.
As for the Liberal are right, I am a classical liberal (Charles Koch sums it up some reading).

132&Bush @ 1/7/2016 7:34 PM

Robert sounds to me that you are an idiot. You are assuming perfection in all actions and results from what they do. We don't even hold doctors to this standard and you are holding cops to it? Very few doctors go to prison for malpractice.

Jeff @ 1/7/2016 8:32 PM

the comments that police are in customer service shows your utter lack of understanding. when ofcs arrive at any disturbance - someone's wrong - period - usually multiple subjects but your fantasy of citizens being the always right customer is laughable at best , but usually dangerous. taxpayers pay for all government services , such as roads , but each individual citizen does not have carte blanche to use that service , say to drive drunk as an example , however they want because of the effect on other citizens.

policy is not law. I have no idea what your reference is but the sheer idiocy of that statement is mind boggling. what would prevent any employer from enacting a policy stating employees needed 80 hour work weeks and be on call for another absurd amount of time without compensation , oh yeah federal and state level labor law. law trumps an employers policy , simple fact. most policies mirror or attempt to gain compliance with law from employees so that the employer does not have legal ramifications. heard of OSHA?

Robert @ 1/7/2016 9:01 PM

The policy that when a citizen is being detained, they are essentially a ward of the state. The LEO in charge of that citizen are required to follow the law and the policies in place to keep that citizen safe. Failure to follow those safe handling / care policies would result in either criminal or civil charges (depending upon the type of negligence...end of story).
The LEO have a use of force policy, this shields them when they act reasonably...however, if they do not follow that policy...that shield of protection is removed (this case demonstrates that).
Slager will argue there was a threat...and he acted with the law and police policies. The DA will argue he was not following either. A Jury will decide.
My customer service point was concerning people who feel police should not have their actions judged or criticized by civilians. The LEO are performing a service; if like the Chicago PD Supt. you fail to provide, new people will be hired. Civilian rule is the law of the land

Robert @ 1/7/2016 9:17 PM

Jeff, if you cannot tell the difference between a government body, enacting a use of force, detainee transfer or other government policy....and a civil employee, enacting a workplace policy...I will explain it too you.
IF I disagree with the civilian workplace policy....I can simply quit, leave the building and find another job.
IF I am being detained, and I don't agree with the use of force or detainee policy...I cannot leave the jail (or prison transport van). I have to rely on the court system to fight that battle for me.
Seems pretty simple to me.
How many LEO on this board have made the statement, on this board...if the suspect would have simply complied, even if the LEO was wrong or you don't agree, no one gets hurt...later the courts will decide who was right.
In a workplace situation, I don't need to comply..I can just leave.
Seems like a simple distinction to me....

FDC @ 1/8/2016 4:16 AM

Robert... I hate to say this but the Police are NOT in the Customer Service business and the customer is not always right. We are in the obey the law business or suffer the consequences. If a Police Officer violates the law he will be punished just as if he were John Q Public with no more nor no less rights. If you were not there you cannot possibly know what happened. You can ONLY assume what you think happened by the presentation of news stories. Robert you do need to comply because if you do not then you are violating the law and force will be used. Be smart and do as instructed. If you are innocent then the courts will find you innocent and then you have the recourse to litigate it.

xxxxx @ 1/8/2016 4:58 AM

Robert I was going to respond to you, but I don't find your "rant" worth responding to. Looks like the boys schooled you enough.

Robert @ 1/8/2016 10:37 AM

FDC...I think you are only half right.
LEO are in the 'obey the law business'...but they are not in the 'suffer the consequences business'. LEO are paid to act as the citizens police force to uphold the law...but LEO are not in the consequences business. That is left to the court, judge and jury.
Most LEO don't like it, but the training is changing...and you are 100% in the customer service business. 95% of the average LEO's day is spent interacting with the public...they are being seen by the public continuously.
The LEO make a decision on every I stay cordial and professional for as long as possible....or not.
As for not being seems pretty clear cut.
--The victim was alive when taken into police custody. The victim died while in police custody; and the coroner ruled that death a homicide...Therefore a crime was committed.
The only question is whether it was error, negligence or criminal? Once in custody, the LEO were responsible for his safety.

JJ-T @ 1/8/2016 11:41 AM

Robert, Let me get this strait, are you saying that because Freddie wasn't in a seat belt, hit his head and died, that makes the officers criminal responsible for his death?

Robert @ 1/8/2016 12:30 PM

Here is exactly what I posted:The victim was alive when taken into police custody. The victim died while in police custody; and the coroner ruled that death a homicide...Therefore a crime was committed.
The only question is whether it was error, negligence or criminal? Once in custody, the LEO were responsible for his safety.
To expand further:
Error: The officer honestly forgot to put the seat liability (not even civil). But the LEO testified differently

Negligence: LEO purposely didn't put on seat belt; but thought there was no danger..civil liability, but not criminal. The LEO testified this is what happened.

Criminal: purposely didn't put on seat belt; knew there was danger and/or took a "rough ride" on purpose. Criminal act.

I did not hear the I will let the judge and jury decide.
Later, a 2nd jury may decide civil charges.
Even later, a board will review the actions & policies...with civilian oversight.
That is what I am saying

JJ-T @ 1/8/2016 6:07 PM

Wow, you are obviously an ambulance chaser and/or defense attorney. Those are the only people that are as full of themselves as you, write/say as much bullshit as you do just to hear yourself talk, don't understand what happens in the real world and enjoy the liberal fantasy of changing the world. Keep protecting the legacy of a dope dealing thug that has been destroying lives ever since he was old enough to walk.

Percy @ 1/8/2016 7:01 PM

@JJ-T Says "Robert, Let me get this strait, are you saying that because Freddie wasn't in a seat belt, hit his head and died, that makes the officers criminal responsible for his death?"
Yes absolutely without question.

In my opinion this was simply put, a rough ride from start to finish to punish Mr Gray for making
the cops involved chase him. The fact that he wasn't strapped in because as Porter testified under oath he "hadn't been shown how" is laughable. Do you need to be shown how to use a seatbelt? Mind you everytime I fly I seem to be reminded by the attendants. And for you to say that "he hit his head and died" is despicable. Shame on you.

You seem to have the same discussion/debate techniqes as SS or XXXXX all sizzle and no steak,
and always talk down to anyone who has a different opinion.

The only person who has made reasonable arguments so far is Robert.

And FDC you are absolutely right about not being in the CS business.
Ask Bettie Jones. I believe she will agree.

JJ-T @ 1/9/2016 5:09 AM

Well then Percy I demand (like blm rioters did) that every parent that puts their kid on a school bus be charged criminally. I mean surely they know how to work a seat belt. Oh and the bus drivers. Man, charge them with conspiracy to commit homicide because they are all in this together. You know they wear seat belts and don't put one on the kids, that's despicable! Maybe they didn't know how? Hell lets charge everyone that works for the schools just like they did in Freddy's case. Yeah, take em all down. You're such a typical libtard that you get off on the fact some cops are getting burned while you are willing to walk over the bodies laying in the streets of the InterCitys. Since this case the bodies have piled up in Baltimore. I guess that's the cops fault too, but that's not important as long as you can focus on taking down some cops and protect the street thugs. Goody for you, Percy. If this is all over a seat belt, give the officers the statutory $25 dollar civil penalty and let's move on to the bigger picture.

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