New U.S. Attorney General meets family of Freddie Gray

U.S Attorney General Loretta Lynch met with members of Freddie Gray's family today, part of a tour that included discussions with officials and community leaders about the 25-year-old whose death sparked rioting and looting around the city.

At her first stop, at the University of Baltimore, she met with some members of Gray's family; they left without commenting to the media waiting outside.


Lynch's visit comes four days after Baltimore State's Attorney Marilyn Mosby announced criminal charges against six officers involved in Gray's arrest and transport. He died April 19 — one week after suffering a spinal injury during the arrest.

The Gray case could be viewed as a key test for Lynch, the first African-American woman to hold the attorney general's position.

Lynch, who was sworn in last Monday, plans to meet with city and law enforcement officials, members of Congress, and faith and community leaders. She will be joined by Vanita Gupta, head of the DOJ's Civil Rights Division; Ronald Davis, director of the Office of Community Oriented Policing Services; and Grande Lum, director of the Community Relations Service, according to a Justice Department official.

The Justice Department has opened a civil rights investigation into Gray's death. The Justice Department is also conducting a collaborative review of the police force in the wake of a Baltimore Sun investigation that found the city had paid nearly $6 million since 2011 to settle brutality claims against officers.

Lynch will visit the city as tension still lingers in the neighborhood where police arrested Gray last month. Angst grew on Monday when national media reported that police shot a black man in the street. The Baltimore police immediately refuted the report, saying that a man's gun discharged when it hit the ground. Gathering crowds were met with dozens of police in riot gear.

City, state and federal officials continue to discuss recovery since crowds ignited buildings in some of the Baltimore's poorest neighborhoods. Gov. Larry Hogan activated the guard last Monday, the day of Gray's funeral, after crowds became violent.  By Saturday, 3,000 Guardsmen were supporting police.

Before becoming the country's top law enforcement official, Lynch served as the United States Attorney for the Eastern District of New York since 2010.