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Baltimore illegally kept half of a woman’s settlement when she spoke about allegations police abused her, a federal judge ruled | The Baltimore Sun

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Baltimore illegally kept half of a woman’s settlement when she spoke about allegations police abused her, a federal judge ruled | The Baltimore Sun

Phillip Jackson, The Baltimore Sun

The city of Baltimore committed an “illegal act” when it took $31,500 from a woman who settled a lawsuit and then spoke out publicly about allegations that police beat her, a federal judge ruled Monday while ordering the city to pay the money back, plus interest.

Ashley Overbey Underwood sued three Baltimore police officers, alleging they beat, tasered, verbally abused and arrested her in 2012 after she called 911 to report a burglary. The city settled the case in 2014 for $63,000. After The Sun reported the original settlement, Overbey Underwood responded to accusations that she initiated the arrest to get a big payout, and gave her version of events online.

—  Credits & Context

Featured Image, Karl Merton Ferron / Baltimore Sun
Full article @ The Baltimore Sun
Freddie Gray

On April 12, 2015, Freddie Carlos Gray Jr., a 25-year-old African-American, was arrested by the Baltimore Police Department and subsequently charged for possessing a knife. While being transported in a police van, Gray sustained injuries and was taken to the R Adams Cowley Shock Trauma Center. Gray died on April 19, 2015; his death was ascribed to injuries to his spinal cord. On April 21, 2015, pending an investigation of the incident, six Baltimore police officers were suspended. The circumstances of the injuries were initially unclear; eyewitness accounts suggested that the officers involved used unnecessary force against Gray during the arrest—a claim denied by all officers involved. Commissioner Anthony W. Batts reported that, contrary to department policy, the officers did not secure Gray inside the van while driving to the police station; this policy had been put into effect six days prior to Gray’s arrest, following review of other transport-related injuries sustained during police custody in the city, and elsewhere in the country during the preceding years. The medical investigation found that Gray had sustained the injuries while in transport. The medical examiner’s office concluded that Gray’s death could not be ruled an accident, and was instead a homicide, because officers failed to follow safety procedures “through acts of omission.” On May 1, 2015, the Baltimore City State’s Attorney, Marilyn Mosby, announced her office had filed charges against six police officers after the medical examiner’s report ruled Gray’s death a homicide.

Source – Death of Freddie Gray (Updated: 18 September 2020) Wikipedia. Available at (Accessed: 24 September 2020)