Protester Gets Fined in Connection with Arrest Following Porter Mistrial

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Kwame Rose confronting Geraldo Rivera in April.
Kwame Rose confronting Geraldo Rivera in April.

A judge handed a fine to a Baltimore activist who was arrested in December while protesting a decision in the Freddie Gray case.

Kwame Rose, who famously confronted Geraldo Rivera during the April protests, was arrested while demonstrating with a bullhorn after Judge Barry Williams declared a mistrial in Officer William Porter’s case. On Tuesday, Rose was ordered to pay a fine for “failure to obey a lawful order,” the Baltimore Sun’s Kevin Rector reported. Rose was acquitted of other charges, including use of a bullhorn, disturbing the peace and blocking the sidewalk and traffic.

Rose was represented by attorney Kenneth Ravenell and the ACLU of Maryland. The ACLU said they were defending Rose’s right to protest peacefully. The organization put out a statement indicating that the lawyers will appeal the judge’s decision.

The arrest in December followed Rose’s arrest in September during pre-trial hearings in the Gray case.

Like the protests themselves, activists’ appearances in court put them face-to-face with the system they are demonstrating against. They also provide a look at the varied ways a case can turn out. In late February, a jury acquitted another protest leader, the Rev. Westley West, of charges including “attempting to incite a riot.” during a September protest outside the courthouse.

Last week, the teen who smashed a police car with a parking cone during last April’s protests took a plea deal. Bullock’s attorney told the Sun’s Justin Fenton that prosecutors “wanted to make an example out of him” by asking for more than nine years in prison. It appears they started in May, when Bullock’s $500,000 bail was found to be higher than the officers charged in Gray’s death.

Stephen Babcock

Stephen Babcock is the editor of Baltimore and an editor-at-large of Baltimore Fishbowl.

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