Without acknowledging any wrongdoing on the part of six officers being charged in relation to the suspect’s death while in police custody, the City of Baltimore has agreed to pay Freddie Gray’s family a $6.4 million wrongful death settlement.
Lt. Gene Ryan, president of the Baltimore City Fraternal Order of Police, reacted to the settlement with incredulity.
“There has been no civil litigation filed nor has there been any guilt determined,” he stated, “that would require such a ridiculous reaction on the part of Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake and her administration.”
The five-member Baltimore Board of Estimates, however, agreed with the payout and asserted that it “has nothing whatsoever to do with the criminal proceedings underway.”
Instead, the board suggested, the “civil settlement is to bring an important measure of closure to the family, the community and the city.”
That closure, Fox News pointed out, comes at a significant cost to the city’s taxpayers. It is Rawlings-Blake’s contention, however, that giving millions to Gray’s family “is in the best interest of protecting taxpayers.”
I wonder if Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake will get a “under the table” cut of #FreddieGray settlement since she has her paws in everything.
— Thoughts Of Truth (@True_Thoughts) September 8, 2015
She cited “the prospect of significant legal expenses involved in an extended federal lawsuit as well as the potential liability that could come with an unfavorable jury verdict” as primary arguments in favor of the settlement.
Many analysts agreed with The Gateway Pundit’s Jim Hoft, who asserted the mayor “decided to pay off the Freddie Gray family hoping it will prevent more rioting.”
A number of Hoft’s readers, however, noted that such a plan could easily backfire.
“That was like feeding the bears,” one critic of the settlement opined. “Now you can expect a riot every weekend.”
Do you think this settlement is fair? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.
BCN editor’s note: This article first appeared at Western Journalism.