Sergeant Alicia White: First Officer To Speak Out on Freddie Gray Case

Sergeant Alicia White speaks out about her ordeal in the Freddie Gray case.

Sergeant Alicia White speaks out about her ordeal in the Freddie Gray case.

Sergeant Alicia White: First Officer To Speak Out on Freddie Gray Case

“That’s not every police. That’s not me,” Alicia White says. “This is home for me. So to be able to continue to help serve the community in which I grew up in, that’s important to me.”

For the first time since charges were filed on six Baltimore police officers, one of them is speaking out. A a report from Justin Fenton with The Baltimore Sun, Sergeant Alicia White discusses the crippling anxiety from the case which sent her to the hospital, and led her and her fiance to call off their engagement.  A lifelong Baltimore resident and Catholic school student from the west-end, Alicia White’s world and career was turned upside down after assisting with an arrest back on April 12, 2015.  The arrest of Freddie Gray and his death in custody sparked national criticism of the Baltimore Police and accusations of willful homicide

After Freddie Gray’s death, State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby alleged that Gray was arrested without probable cause, assaulted, and falsely accused of carrying an illegal switchblade.  Without waiting for an investigation to be completed, or reviewing all of the details of the case, she quickly brought charges on all officers involved in the arrest, and had them arrested when there was no probable cause for their arrest.

The six officers had charges ranging from second-degree depraved-heart murder to manslaughter, reckless endangerment, and misconduct in office.  The most severe charges centered around the officers failing to seatbelt Gray in the back of the transport van, which suggests that any parent with an unseatbelted child should be charged with attempted murder. Not only that, but the entire case was built on the theory that officers could not assist each other with any part of an arrest without fully reviewing the other officer’s evidence and probable cause and making their own independent determination that the arrest was lawful. Impractical at any time, impossible with a violent or resisting suspect.

To say that the officers were in total shock would be an understatement.  Alicia White said she hadn’t even talked to a lawyer.  With just five years on the force, she was already rising through the ranks and carried a strong reputation in the community.

White’s interaction with Gray lasted all of 15 to 20 seconds.  “I don’t understand why on earth she was charged; I’ve never understood why she was charged,” White’s lawyer, Ivan Bates said. “Maybe from some standpoint you have three black officers, you have three white officers. Or maybe you wanted to make sure you charged a woman. Maybe you wanted to charge a black woman.”

Prosecutors charged all six officers and failed miserably in court as Judge Barry Williams, a black judge, acquitted all officers one-by-one.  A case without any evidence to support the criminal charges had no chance of succeeding.  After Mosby;s office failed to prosecute the first three officers, she decided to drop all remaining cases against the other officers to avoid ongoing embarrassment. Throughout the ordeal, Alicia says that she remained faithful in her walk with God during this time.

Having her name cleared is the first of many steps for this Sergeant.  She is still facing an Internal Affairs investigation.  And she was financially devastated after spending over a year on unpaid leave.

Sergeant Alicia White has now received all of her back pay from time missed and is working toward getting back to her job serving the community that includes many who called for her to be charged with a crime she did not commit. However, many other in the community can’t wait to have her.  “I know her character,” says Councilman Brandon Scott. “This is someone I trust with my life and, more importantly, that we entrust with the lives of young people in the neighborhood.”

You can see the full interview with Sergeant Alicia White HERE.

Do you think that Marilyn Mosby should be criminally prosecuted for the malicious prosecution of the Baltimore officers? Let us know on our Facebook page or in the comments below.