[Baltimore Sun] Report outlines evidence in decision not to charge Baltimore Police officers in deadly June 2023 shootout

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A new report from the Maryland Office of the Attorney General’s Independent Investigations Division sheds light on the decision by the Baltimore State Attorney’s Office to not charge Baltimore Police officers in a June 2023 shootout that killed 40-year-old Darryl Gamble.

In a shootout a few blocks north of Patterson Park, Gamble fired more than 30 rounds while five officers fired 51, according to the report, which summarizes the evidence and reviews potential charges and defenses but does not offer an opinion.

Gamble and his vehicle were wanted in connection to an attempted murder when he was spotted by four officers stopped at a Royal Farms on East Fayette Street on June 29, 2023. The officers started following him in an unmarked black Ford Fusion police car, according to the report. Officers attempted to follow Gamble on East Fayette but lost sight of him around 5:30 p.m., according to the report citing body camera footage.

Around 40 seconds later and about a half mile away at the intersection of East Fayette and Lakewood streets, another officer in an unmarked SUV spotted Gamble, who got out of his car and shot at the officer’s passenger window, according to the report. Then five officers on foot surrounded Gamble near the 1400 block of North Milton Avenue in the Patterson Park and Patterson Place neighborhoods. Private security camera footage recorded Gamble as he opened fire with a handgun before falling backward. He attempted to retrieve a rifle from a backpack as officers opened fire, and Stephen Romey radioed just before 5:32 p.m. “suspect is down,” according to the report. A medic declared him dead at 5:41 p.m.

The officers, Matthew Banocy, Nicholas DeJesus, Austin Gutridge, Connor Johnson and Nevin Nolte, each fired at least five rounds, and Gamble was shot 15 times.

The officers could have been charged with excessive force, second-degree murder and voluntary manslaughter, according to the report.

The independent investigative division finished its investigation Dec. 8 and sent the report to the Baltimore City State’s Attorney on Dec. 20. In May, the Baltimore State Attorney’s Office said charges were declined because officers were pursuing a wanted person who fled and fired a gun at officers as “the initial aggressor.” Police officers shot Gamble in response to his gunfire and were justified in the use of deadly force, prosecutors wrote.

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