The National  Memo Logo

Smart. Sharp. Funny. Fearless.

Monday, December 09, 2019 {{ new Date().getDay() }}

New York (AFP) – A grand jury on Wednesday said it would not charge a white New York police officer in the choking death of a black man, U.S. media reported.

Eric Garner, a 43-year-old father-of-six, died after being placed in a chokehold by New York police Officer Daniel Pantaleo while being arrested on suspicion of selling untaxed cigarettes in Staten Island.

The decision comes shortly after a grand jury in the Missouri town of Ferguson declined to charge another white officer who shot dead an unarmed black teen, in a case that triggered nationwide protests.

Authorities in New York were concerned that Wednesday’s grand jury decision would lead to violence.

In recent days protesters have demonstrated — largely peacefully — in New York to decry what they say is the over-reliance of aggressive tactics by police, especially against black people.

Cellphone footage of the July 17 confrontation showed Garner, who has asthma, complaining “I can’t breathe” after being bundled onto the ground by several police officers.

He fell unconscious and was declared dead at a local hospital.

A New York medical examiner ruled the death a homicide caused in part by the chokehold used during the arrest.

New York mayor Bill de Blasio said on Monday that authorities need to address the “underlying reality” highlighted by the death of Michael Brown in Ferguson and Garner in New York.

The grand jury in New York’s Staten Island had been hearing evidence since September and reportedly heard from its final witness last week.

Several U.S. media outlets including the New York Times and New York Post first reported the decision not to indict Pantaleo.

Photo via Wikimedia Commons

This story has been updated

Start your day with National Memo Newsletter

Know first.

The opinions that matter. Delivered to your inbox every morning

Trump mob storming the Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021

Reprinted with permission from Alternet

Some of the January 6 rioters who are facing federal criminal charges are now saying, as part of their defense, that they were misled, brainwashed or unfairly manipulated by then-President Donald Trump, MAGA media and/or the QAnon cult. And one of the rioters who is using that type of defense is QAnon supporter Doug Jensen, who is saying that he was a "victim" of false information from the far-right conspiracy movement.

Keep reading... Show less

Close