Baltimore City's top prosecutor, State's Attorney Marilyn J. Mosby, charged all six officers who had been suspended in connection with Freddie Gray's death. The highest charge, second-degree depraved heart murder, went to the driver of the van.
Legal experts are divided on whether the charges against the officers will stick.
All six have been released on bail, which ranged from $250,000 to $350,000, court records show. The officers had no probable cause to arrest Gray, Mosby said. A knife they found in his pants pocket was not a switchblade, as police previously said, and was legal under Maryland law, she said. Mosby said an investigation found officers bound Gray's wrists and ankles and left him stomach-down on the floor of a police van as they drove around West Baltimore.
Officers had at least five opportunities to call for medical attention. By the time they reached the Western District police station, he was not breathing and in cardiac arrest, she said.
Gray suffered a "severe and critical neck injury" as a result of being handcuffed, shackled and being unrestrained in the van, she said. Two more men have since come forward alleging they too were victims of such "rough rides" in police vans.
Learn about the six officers who were charged.
In an open letter to Mosby the Fraternal Order of Police asked her to appoint an independent prosecutor citing her ties to the Gray family's attorney and her lead prosecutor's connections to members of the local media. Mosby said, "The people of Baltimore City elected me and there is no accountability with a special prosecutor."
A GoFundMe fundraising page for the officers' defense was shut down because the site's founders said it "cannot be used to benefit those who are charged with serious violations of the law."
Freddie Gray's stepfather, Richard Shipley, said that his family was satisfied with the criminal charges brought against the six police officers who were involved in his stepson's arrest. The speed of the charges surprised many, including Gray's family. Kevin Moore, who filmed Gray's arrest, cried tears of joy when they were announced, saying, "I finally made a difference in this world."
At least 53 protesters were arrested Friday, as they marched in celebration over the charges and staged a sit-in outside the City Hall defying the weeklong, 10 p.m. curfew. A man accused of cutting fire hoses as firefighters responded to blazes during Monday's riots was arrested and charged.
A spokesman for Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake's office confirms the curfew will remain in effect tonight. No decisions have been made whether the curfew will end early or be extended beyond the initial order of a week.
The curfew has faced criticism and caused event planners to scramble to reschedule weddings, galas and other events in the city.