The Howard County school system has canceled field trips to Baltimore City this week in anticipation of a verdict in the first trial of a police officer in the Freddie Gray case. The city is bracing for potential unrest following the jury's decision, much like the unrest following Gray's death in April.
Folly Quarter Middle School and Clarksville, Worthington, Centennial Lane, and Swansfield elementary schools had planned field trips to Baltimore City this week. Baltimore County schools also postponed or canceled field trips into the city through the end of the week.
The Baltimore Sun reported that several community groups are calling for protests in the city should the officer, William G. Porter, be acquitted.
Officer Porter is charged with involuntary manslaughter, second-degree assault, misconduct in office and reckless endangerment. Prosecutors in the case argue that Porter's failure to secure Gray in the back of a police van and call for medical attention when Gray requested it is equivalent to criminal neglect.
The jury began deliberating on Monday afternoon and a verdict is expected some time this week.