Freddie Gray's knife and the Mosby standard of probable cause

One of the most telling points of Baltimore State’s attorney Marilyn J. Mosby’s case against the police officers who arrested and allegedly killed Freddie Gray was that the basis for the arrest, Gray’s possession of a concealed knife, was itself illegal.  Reliably, Washington Post columnist Eugene Robinson pointed this out in a recent column, asserting, “Freddie Gray never had a chance” because he was targeted by police and illegally arrested.  And indeed, if Gray’s arrest was illegal, the case against the Baltimore police gains substantial legal and emotional heft.  But it is far from clear that Mosby’s assertion is even close to being true.  A detailed breakdown of the issue, including a copy of the arrest papers, is posted at Legal Insurrection and worth reading in full.  In summary, Gray was found in possession of a concealed knife that the police described in the arrest papers as a switchblade.  Possibly,...(Read Full Post)