#WantedWednesday: Captain Charles Thompson

Photo by Reginald Thomas II

  • Excessive Force
  • False Arrest
  • False Imprisonment
  • Abusive Language
  • Harassment
  • Corruption

Nine Baltimore activists filed a class action lawsuit against the Baltimore Police Department and the State of Maryland related to the #AFROMATION protest during Artscape on July 16, 2016. That day, 65 protesters were arrested when a large march, dubbed #AFROMATION, began at Guilford Avenue and Chase Street, moved through Artscape, and then onto I-83, blocking traffic for several minutes.

The allegations against Baltimore Police Department include keeping arrestees in “harsh detention conditions,” holding them in police vans for hours with no ventilation, providing “little to no access to water, food, toilets, or necessary medication,” handcuffing arrestees too tightly, sexual harassment, the taunting and misgendering of a trans arrestee, and the arrest of a legal observer.

Among those named in the suit is [former] Commissioner Kevin Davis, and Capt. Charles Thompson, who the suit says, “upon information and belief…was responsible for ordering the mass arrest.”

Source: City Paper

As early as the initial protests after the Freddie Gray arrest, to the City Hall Shutdown on October 14, 2015, to as recent as the targeted arrest of a Baltimore Bloc activist at the City Council public hearing on July 25, 2017, Capt. Thompson has been regularly cited by the organizing community for such targeted arrests. The community has made specific asks that he be removed from such patrols.

Capt. Thompson was appointed to the Police Trial Board for the trial of Lt. Brian Rice, the highest ranking officer involved in the arrest and subsequent murder of Freddie Gray in 2015. Thompson was one of 3 members of the administrative board that sought to determine whether Rice was guilty of any of the 10 offences for which he was charged.

Rice was cleared of all charges by that Trial Board in November 2017. Noting a conflict of interest, community members and media have stated that had Rice been found guilty on any charges related to his use of force, it would set a precedent upon which to hold Thompson accountable for similar uses of force.

Source: Baltimore Beat

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