It’s been a whirlwind week of news coming out of Baltimore surrounding the Freddie Gray case. In the latest development, embattled Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake, who has been dealing with the fallout since Gray’s in-custody death and subsequent protests and riots in April, has announced that she has no further plans to seek re-election, the Baltimore Sun reports.
According to the newspaper, Rawlings-Blake said that she was withdrawing her campaign to focus on “work to move our city forward.”
“It was a very difficult decision, but I knew I needed to spend time, the remaining 15 months of my term, focused on the city's future and not my own,” she said at a news conference, according to the Sun.
Prior to the announcement, the Sun notes, the 45-year-old politician had been expanding her campaign, reportedly building a field organization in the city, hosting fundraisers and hosting events such as Mondays with the Mayor at local bars and restaurants. However, sources told the Sun that Rawlings-Blake began to feel that it would be inappropriate to ask for money while the city was still recovering from the crisis.
According to the Sun, with the first trial in the case scheduled for early October, city officials and police have been preparing for more tension.
Earlier this week, the city approved a $6.4 million settlement with Gray’s family, unrelated to the criminal charges brought against the six officers involved. Just yesterday, a judge ruled that the trials for the six officers would remain in the city.
Read more at the Baltimore Sun.