NY Officer Won’t Face Charges in Eric Garner Chokehold Death
WASHINGTON (AP) – Federal Prosecutors announced Tuesday that it had decided not to bring civil rights charges against New York City police officer Pantaleo in connection with Eric Garner’s 2014 death.
Officers were attempting to arrest Garner on charges he sold loose, untaxed cigarettes outside a Staten Island convenience store. Garner refused to be handcuffed, and officers took him down.
A state grand jury refused to indict Officer Daniel Pantaleo on criminal charges.
Chokeholds are banned under police policy. Pantaleo maintained he used a legal takedown maneuver called the “seatbelt.”
The medical examiner found a chokehold contributed to Garner’s death.
A lawyer says New York Police Officer Daniel Pantaleo is “gratified” that the Justice Department carefully reviewed his case rather than what he calls the “lies and inaccuracies” surrounding it.
Attorney Stuart London says Pantaleo used techniques approved by the New York Police Department while arresting Garner, who died after uttering “I can’t breathe.” London added that a loss of life is “always a tragedy.”
Meanwhile, a chant of “No justice, no peace!” erupted as Garner’s family and their supporters gathered outside City Hall.
Cousin Michael Garner stressed that the family has the “utmost respect” for law enforcement when it is “applied fairly.” However, he said officers who were “there and did nothing” should be fired.