Hearing Begins For Officer In Freddie Gray Case

BALTIMORE (AP) – Attorneys have given opening arguments in a police disciplinary hearing that began Monday for Officer Caesar Goodson.

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BALTIMORE, MD – JANUARY 11: Baltimore Police officer Caesar Goodson arrives at the Mitchell Courthouse-West for jury selection in his trial January 11, 2016 in Baltimore, Maryland. Goodson is one of six Baltimore police officers charged in relation to the death in custody of 25-year-old Freddie Gray, who suffered a fatal spinal cord injury while being held by police in April of 2015. (Photo by Jose Louis Magana-Pool/Getty Images)

An attorney for the Baltimore Police Department says Goodson should be fired for failing to follow procedures while driving a van that was transporting a man who ended up dying in custody.

Neil Duke says Goodson failed to do his duty to fasten Freddie Gray into a seatbelt after Gray’s arrest in 2015.

But Goodson’s attorney says the officer didn’t receive proper direction from the department on recent policy changes regarding seatbelt use.

Goodson was acquitted of murder and other charges last year.

Gray was critically injured during the van ride and died about a week later. His death sparked riots in Baltimore.

Two members of the Baltimore Police Department and one outside chair will consider whether Goodson violated department policies and procedures. Then they’ll decide whether the officer should be disciplined and what the punishment will be. The hearing is expected to last up to five days.

(© Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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