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Man who suffered spinal injury after police contact dies

BLACK LIVES MATTER: Freddie Gray died yesterday morning (April 19) at the University of Maryland Shock Trauma Center

BALTIMORE’S MAYOR Stephanie Rawlings-Blake has vowed to hold “the right people accountable” after a 27-year-old man died a week after he was left with a severed spine following contact with police.

Gray, an otherwise healthy man, severed 80 per cent of his spine at the neck following his arrest on April 12 by four bicycle officers for violation that's being kept 'secret' according to the family’s lawyer, William Murphy Jr.

Less than an hour after his arrest, Gray was on his way to a trauma clinic with a spinal injury, where he fell into a coma.

“He’s gone,” Richard Shipley, Gray’s stepfather, told the Baltimore Sun after his death yesterday (April 19). “What else is there to say?”

“He lapsed into a coma, died, was resuscitated, stayed in a coma and on Monday, underwent extensive surgery at the University of Maryland Shock Trauma Center to save his life,” Murphy explained. “He clung to life for seven days and died today.”

Maryland police are conducting a criminal investigation into Gray’s death

A timeline released earlier in the week by police said Gray was taken by a prisoner transport van from the 'crime' scene to the Western District station shortly before 9am last Sunday.

While he was in the van, Gray was put in additional restrains, according to CBS Baltimore.

Thirty minutes after he was put in restraints, an ambulance was called to the police station to take Gray to the hospital.


ARREST: Gray's arrest was captured on camera

He suffered a broken vertebra and an injured voice box, according to his family.

Civilian video showed him being loaded into the van, but did not show the entire encounter.

During the video, a woman said: “That boy's legs look broke.

“His legs [look] broke and y'all dragging him like that.”

The race of the officers involved could not immediately be confirmed and they have been placed on leave.

Deputy Police Commissioner Jerry Rodriguez said said officers were working an area where drug deals and other crimes are common, .

They thought Gray may have been involved in a crime, Murphy Jr. said.

Gray's death comes just over a week after unarmed father-of-four Walter Scott was shot eight times in the back by officer Michael Slager in South Carolina. Even while Scott lies motionless on the ground, Slager continues to handcuff him.

Scott's death was followed by that of Eric Harris, 44, who was 'accidentally' shot by a sheriff's deputy, who claims he mistook his gun for a taser in Oklahoma.

Anyone who witnessed Gray's arrest or has video of the incident is being asked aid in the investigation.

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