BALTIMORE (WUSA9) – Nearly 24 hours after announcing they were deadlocked in deliberations, a mistrial has been declared in the trial of William Porter, one of six police officers charged in the death of Freddie Gray.
The judge declared a hung jury on Wednesday. The afternoon before, the jury had sent a note to the judge saying members had been deadlocked. He told them to keep working.
Porter had faced charges of manslaughter, assault, reckless endangerment and misconduct in office stemming from Gray's death. A mistrial was declared in all four charges.
Judge Barry Williams told the jurors they had "clearly been diligent" before he dismissed them.
Williams is expected to meet with prosecutors and defense attornies Thursday to discuss dates for a possible retrial.
Baltimore City State's Attorney Marilyn Mosby, who brought the charges against Porter and the other officers in Gray's death, declined to comment after the judge's decision.
Demonstrators gathered outside the courthouse after the mistrial was announced. The demonstrations were largely peaceful, but two people were arrested and charged with disorderly conduct, among other charges.
Baltimore Police Commissioner Kevin Davis said peaceful protesters have "a friend" in the department, but people who commit crimes and hurt people lose their right to call themselves demonstrators.
In a statement, Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake said, "I urge everyone to remember that collectively, our reaction needs to be one of respect for our neighborhoods, and for the residents and business of our city."
The Baltimore City Fraternal Order of Police said in a statement that the decision of the jury must be respected.
The last riots in Baltimore broke last April after Freddy Gray died of a broken neck during his ride in a police van. His death led to protests, rioting and a curfew after people became angry over the police treatment of Gray.
Fifteen police officers were injured during the violent protests and riots that broke out just hours after Gray was laid to rest.
Rioters threw bricks and other objects, destroyed police cars, set cars and building on fire and looted a mall in what officials say was an unprovoked attack on police officers and the city. Police say many of the rioters appeared to be juveniles. At least 27 arrests were made.
Prosecutors said Porter is partially responsible for Gray's death for failing to buckle the man into a seatbelt and not calling an ambulance when he indicated he was in distress. Porter told jurors he didn't think Gray was injured, and that it was the van driver's responsibility to fasten Gray's seat belt.
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Porter was the first of six Baltimore City police officers to go to trial in the case.
Associated Press contributed to this report.
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