Baltimore police custody death protests grow

Freddie Gray died after suffering a fatal spine injury under unexplained circumstances after his arrest

Baku. 23 April. REPORT.AZ/ Protesters in Baltimore have begun a week of demonstrations after the death of a man in police custody.

Report informs referring the information given by the BBC, Freddie Gray, 25, died on Sunday after suffering a fatal spine injury under unexplained circumstances after his arrest earlier this month.

The US Justice Department has opened a civil rights investigation.

A thousand people gathered on Tuesday at the site of his arrest, kicking off seven days of protests against what they believe is excessive police force.

As people raised their hands, Pastor Jamal Bryant, one of the demonstrations organisers, said the gesture was not an act of surrender.

"It's a sign of strength, of one unity and one commitment that we will not rest until we get justice for Freddie Gray," he said.

Gray was arrested on 12 April. Officials said that he ran away after he "made eye contact" with officers on patrol.

Officers pursued him and took him into custody minutes later. The officers' reasoning for detaining Gray is not clear.

"There is no law against running," Police Commissioner Anthony Batts told reporters on Monday.

"Running while black is not probable cause," Billy Murphy, a lawyer hired by the Gray family, said.

Mobile phone video shows police pinning Gray to the ground before a detention van arrives to transport him to a police station.

In the video, officers are seen dragging Gray's limp body into the van. It is not known whether Gray's body was limp because of a deliberate act of defiance or because of a medical condition.

Gray was in the van for approximately 30 minutes. At one point, police stopped to put Gray into leg shackles after determining he had become irate.

He asked officers for medical care on multiple occasions, Mr Batts said.

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