The Chatter

​City to Pay Freddie Gray’s Family $6.4 Million in Settlement

Payout would resolve civil claims against Baltimore City in death of 25-year-old.

By Ron Cassie | September 8, 2015, 2:25 pm

The Chatter

​City to Pay Freddie Gray’s Family $6.4 Million in Settlement

Payout would resolve civil claims against Baltimore City in death of 25-year-old.

By Ron Cassie | September 8, 2015, 2:25 pm

The Baltimore City Law Department will submit a $6.4 million settlement proposal of all civil claims arising from last spring's death of Freddie Gray, Jr. to the Board of Estimates during its regularly scheduled meeting Wednesday morning.

The proposed settlement—of which $2.8 million would be paid during Baltimore City’s current fiscal year and $3.6 million in the fiscal year beginning July 1, 2016— would resolve all civil claims related to the City of Baltimore, the Baltimore Police Department, individual Baltimore police officers, and any other city-affiliated persons or institutions who might be deemed responsible for the death of Gray.

The proposed settlement, which is expected to approved by the Board of Estimates, does not resolve any factual disputes surrounding the events of April 12—the day of Gray’s arrest. It does not constitute an admission of liability on the part of the City, the Baltimore Police Department, or any of the police officers that interacted with Gray, according to a press release from the office of Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake

The settlement also does not affect the criminal proceedings against the six Baltimore City police officers now underway, city officials said.

"The proposed settlement agreement going before the Board of Estimates should not be interpreted as a judgment on the guilt or innocence of the officers facing trial,” Rawlings-Blake said in a statement. “This settlement is being proposed solely because it is in the best interest of the city, and avoids costly and protracted litigation that would only make it more difficult for our city to heal and potentially cost taxpayers many millions more in damages."

At a separate press conference about an unrelated topic Tuesday morning, Rawlings-Blake said she would not comment further until after the Board of Estimates meeting. The Board of Estimates consists of five voting members: the mayor, president of the City Council, the comptroller, the city solicitor, and the director of Public Works

Baltimore City Council President Bernard C. "Jack" Young, a member of the Board of Estimates, will vote in favor of the proposed payout, his spokesman Lester Davis said.

“This matter is separate from the criminal cases that are ongoing,” Davis said. “In terms of any civil litigation case, the cost of defending against any claims coupled with the potential for judgments makes this right decision for the taxpayers of Baltimore City.”

According to reporting by The Baltimore Sun, multimillion-dollar wrongful death settlements are rare in the City. Since 2011, only six payments exceeded $200,000 in the more than 120 police brutality-related claims. In all those cases, settlements came after months or years of litigation fights.

Baltimore police officer Caesar Goodson faces the most serious charge—second-degree “depraved-heart” murder—in the death of Gray, who was fatally injured while being transported in a van driven by Goodson. Lt. Brian Rice, Sgt. Alicia White and officer William Porter face manslaughter charges. All six of the officers, which also include Edward Nero and Garret Miller, have been charged with second-degree assault, misconduct and reckless endangerment.

A pre-trial motions hearing for the six police officers—all of whom will be tried separately at this point—is scheduled for Thursday when City Circuit Court Judge Barry G. Williams will decide whether to move the cases out of Baltimore.




Meet The Author

Ron Cassie is a senior editor for Baltimore, where he covers the environment, education, medicine, politics, and city life.



You May Also Like


The Chatter

What Did Baltimore Google in 2019?

Here are the topics and trends that got Charm City talking this year.

The Chatter

What You Need to Know About Tuesday’s Special Primary Election

We break down top Dem platforms and predictions in race for Elijah Cummings’ seat.

News & Community

Did Not Compute

Twenty years later, we look back at the overhyped phenomenon that was Y2K.


The Chatter

A. Hoen & Co. Lithograph Building Now Home to Strong City Baltimore

The 50-year-old nonprofit has officially moved into the neighborhood it hopes to help grow.

The Chatter

Kirwan Commission Bill Aims to Set Higher Education Standards for Maryland

Funding concerns could stall progress of the public school reform legislation.

News & Community

Cameo: Jessica Watson and Shervonne Cherry

We sit down with the co-founders of Baltimore Womxn in Tech.

Connect With Us

Most Read


Caleeb Pinkett Screens 'Charm City Kings' at Sundance Film Festival: Producer talks source material, filming in Baltimore, and his famous family.

Will Judge Make an Example Out of Catherine Pugh?: With the former mayor’s sentencing scheduled for February, both sides get to work on their case.

Religious Leaders React to Proposed Increase in Funding to Prevent Hate Crimes: Van Hollen, Sarbanes, and Cardin want to quadruple aid protecting local religious groups.

Maryland Politicians React to Trump Impeachment: Local leaders reflect and look ahead at Senate trial.

Orioles Execs Not Mentioned in ‘AstroGate’ Sign-Stealing Scandal: GM Mike Elias and the O’s other ex-Astros employees have steered clear of the fallout.