Conservative commentator Pat Buchanan is troubled by the charges filed against six Baltimore police officers by Maryland state attorney Marilyn Mosby and believes the prosecution of the indicted officers has more to do with appeasing rioters than delivering justice.
In an exclusive, two-part interview with The Daily Caller on the unrest in Baltimore, the former presidential candidate said that — based on the evidence presented to the public of the April 12 arrest of Freddie Gray and the viral video of the incident — the officers should not have been charged with such serious crimes as second-degree murder and involuntary manslaughter. (RELATED: Law Professor: Baltimore Officers Were Overcharged, Charges Will Likely Be Dismissed)
“She [Mosby] better have a much stronger hand than she has shown so far because I do not see [the evidence for indictments],” Buchanan told TheDC Sunday in a phone interview. “I haven’t seen hard evidence of a deliberate attempt to injure or assault Freddie Gray by any officer in any part of that film.”
In particular, the syndicated columnist believes there is no justification for the second-degree murder charge against officer Caesar Goodson, the driver of the police van that transported Gray where it is believed the 25-year-old suffered his fatal injury. (RELATED: Baltimore Police Release Mugshots Of Six Cops Charged In Freddie Gray Death)
“The charge against the driver — who’s an African-American policeman with a long history on the force — that he intended to deliberately murder Freddie Gray…where is the evidence for that?” he told TheDC.
In Buchanan’s opinion, at most, the worst thing these officers did was commit a “police mistake” by arresting Gray for carrying a legal pocket knife. (RELATED: Freddie Gray Had A Long Rap Sheet)
As for Mosby, the political commentator believes that she is more motivated by the demands of rioters than she is by the facts of the case.
“Marilyn Mosby was responding to the clamor of the crowd,” Buchanan says of the state attorney’s decision to indict. “She said as much, ‘No justice, no peace. I’m going to deliver justice.'”
He was particularly alarmed by Mosby’s statement announcing the charges against the six officers, which Buchanan believes was a proclamation more concerned with satisfying the demands of agitators than with justice.
“It was beyond the pale. It was not a statement of a prosecutor seeking justice for six people she’s charged, but the statement of a prosecutor who’s making points with the crowd that wants a conviction and even more than that.”
To Buchanan, the only way these six officers will receive a fair trial is with a change of venue due to the “inflammatory statements” of officials involved in the proceedings and the tense situation on the ground in Baltimore.