Officer Caesar R. Goodson jury selection: Day 1

Maryland's second-highest court intervened Monday and postponed the trial of a Baltimore police officer in the death of Freddie Gray, potentially delaying for months the trials of all the officers charged in the case.

The Court of Special Appeals issued its last-minute order to halt the proceedings Monday morning, when jury selection was set to begin in the second-degree murder trial of fellow Officer Caesar R. Goodson Jr.

The appellate court said it needs time to consider whether Officer William G. Porter can be forced to testify at Goodson's trial. Baltimore Circuit Judge Barry G. Williams had ordered the officer to testify with limited immunity, and Porter's attorneys asked the appellate court for an injunction to block that.

Goodson, the driver of the van in which Freddie Gray was critically injured, would have been the second of six Baltimore officers to be tried in the case surrounding Gray's death.


What happened last week:

» Judge Barry G. Williams ordered that Officer William Porter be compelled to testify at Goodson's trial.


» Porter's defense attorneys appealed last week to the Court of Special Appeals to block prosecutors from calling their client to testify at Goodson's trial.

» Williams said he found himself in "uncharted territory" as he granted a type of immunity that allows Porter's charges to stand but which precludes his testimony from being used against him.

» Attorneys and legal observers agreed that such a ruling against a co-defendant was a first in Maryland.

Porter's testimony:

Porter's defense attorney Gary Proctor had argued that forcing Porter to testify at the trial of Officer Caesar Goodson would violate his state and federal constitutional rights that protect defendants against self-incrimination, and that he could be subjected to perjury charges or become exposed in a federal investigation.

Chief Deputy State's Attorney Michael Schatzow said Porter could not claim such protections once granted immunity.

Prosecutors have said Porter is a "material witness" against Goodson and Sgt. Alicia White, whose trial is scheduled for Feb, 8.

What are the charges against the police officers?

Officer Caesar R. Goodson, the driver of the van used to transport Gray, is charged with second-degree depraved-heart murder, the most serious charge among the six officers. He also is charged with manslaughter, second-degree assault, two counts of vehicular manslaughter, misconduct in office and reckless endangerment.

Lt. Brian W. Rice, and Sgt. Alicia D. White, face involuntary manslaughter, second-degree assault, misconduct in office and reckless endangerment charges. Rice also faces an additional count of misconduct in office.

Officers Edward M. Nero and Garrett E. Miller are charged with second-degree assault, and misconduct in office.

Porter remains charged with involuntary manslaughter, second-degree assault, reckless endangerment and two counts of misconduct in office.


When are those trials?

The trial dates for White and Miller were changed last week.

White's was moved from Jan. 25 to Feb. 8. Miller's was moved from Feb. 9 to March 7.

The trials for Nero (Feb. 22) and Rice (March 9) remain unchanged for now.

How can I follow the proceedings?

The Sun is hosting a live blog with updates throughout the proceedings.

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