Jurors deliberated more than 16 hours over three days but could not reach a verdict in the trial of the first officer to face prosecution in Freddie Gray's death. Judge Barry Williams declared a mistrial on Wedneday, forcing an already-weary Baltimore to continue waiting for any resolution in a case that has strained this city for months, the Washington Post reports. The jury had said they previous day that they weren't able to come to a unanimous conclusion. They had been deliberating for about nine hours before the judge sent them back and told them to keep trying.
The city continued to be on edge for fear of repeat riots, looting and protests like those that tore through Baltimore after Gray's death in police custody. School officials have warned students against participating in any civil disorder, law enforcement has been ramping up resources and politicians urged calm. The jury must weigh two competing explanations of Porter's role in Gray's death. Prosecutors have put forth the image of an uncaring cop who doomed Gray to suffer in a “casket on wheels” by failing to put the 25-year-old in a seatbelt or get him immediate medical attention. Defense attorneys portray a “reasonable officer,” saying Porter saw no outward signs that Gray was injured and informed other officers responsible for Gray's well being about his request to go to the hospital.