Freddie Gray’s mother, Gloria Darden, was reportedly hospitalized following an unsuccessful suicide attempt. Although authorities confirmed the woman is being treated for “self-inflicted” injuries of an unknown nature, she is expected to survive. Darden gained national attention following the death of her 25-year-old son, who was critically injured while in police custody.
As reported by People, the family has not commented on the attempted suicide. However, the family’s attorney, Billy Murphy, said Gloria “is still mourning the loss of her son.”
On April 12, Freddie Gray was walking down the street in his Baltimore, Maryland, neighborhood — when he unexpectedly started to run. Several police officers, who were patrolling the area, became suspicious — as the young man “fled unprovoked upon noticing the police presence.”
— Breaking911 (@Breaking911) October 23, 2015
As reported in the official Statement of Charges, Freddie was captured and detained following a “brief foot chase.” The young man was subsequently arrested, as authorities found a “switch blade” knife in his possession.
What happened next remains a point of heated controversy.
According to the official report, Gray surrendered to the officers and “was arrested without force or incident.” However, the report also states that “the defendant suffered a medical emergency” during transport in the back of a police van.
Although he survived the initial injury, Freddie Gray remained in a coma for one week. The 25-year-old man died on April 19.
As reported by Baltimore Sun, a Maryland medical examiner later determined Freddie’s neck and spine were critically damaged due to a “high-energy injury.” Although Gray’s cause of death was determined to be homicide, the medical examiner said the injuries were caused by negligence — not excessive force.
In his professional opinion, the young man was standing up in the back of the van when the driver made an abrupt stop or change of direction. As he was not properly secured, the suspect was launched into the wall. As a direct result, Freddie Gray suffered a critical injury to his neck and spinal cord.
SO sad: Gloria Darden, Freddie Gray’s mother, reportedly attempts suicide: https://t.co/IBIH9LzPwo pic.twitter.com/sMfSG3MfQe
— The Root (@TheRoot) October 23, 2015
Although the officers deny any wrongdoing, and the medical examiner believes the injury happened while the van was moving, several witnesses claim Freddie was injured by the officers — during an unplanned stop.
As reported by NPR, the officers made an unrelated stop on their way to the jail. As Freddie seemed specifically agitated, the officers removed him from the van and asked him to lay on the ground.
Kevin Moore witnessed the incident. In his opinion the young man’s injuries were the result of police brutality.
According to Moore, the officers placed the suspect on the ground. In attempt to restrain him, one of the officers placed his knee against the back of the Freddie’s neck — while another held his legs in a bent position.
Moore said the suspect was “screaming for his life” as he was “folded up like he was a crab or a piece of origami.”
After restraining the suspect in “flexi cuffs” and leg restraints, the officers placed him in the back of the van and left the scene. Although it was a violation of policy, the officers did not secure Freddie Gray with a seatbelt.
According to reports, the officers stopped at numerous points along their route. Although Freddie “indicated at least twice he was in need of a medic,” the officers did not call for assistance.
When they arrived at the Western District Police Station, Gray was unresponsive. Seven days later, the 25-year-old man was dead. Freddie Gray’s mother, and the rest of his family, were devastated.
As the circumstances surrounding Freddie Gray’s death were clearly unusual, the six officers involved in his arrest and transport were placed on leave and subjected to an internal investigation.
As a result of the investigation, officers Caesar Goodson, Garret Miller, Edward Nero, William Porter, Brian Rice, and Alicia White were charged with manslaughter and second degree heart-depraved murder. They are each facing up to 40 years in prison.
Although the officers are facing punishment for their involvement in the incident, Freddie Gray’s mother, Gloria Darden, is still reeling from the tremendous loss. There are few details about the attempted suicide available at this time. However, the family’s attorney has asked for positive thoughts and prayers.
[Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images]