NYPD Chokehold Death Will Go To Grand Jury, Prosecutor Says

Aug 20, 2014
Originally published on August 20, 2014 11:21 am

A prosecutor in New York is asking a grand jury to consider charges in the death of Eric Garner, who died last month in police custody after an officer placed him in a chokehold, as NPR's Joel Rose reports.

"The 43-year-old Staten Island man died after police attempted to arrest him for selling loose cigarettes. Cellphone video taken by a bystander shows Garner gasping 'I can't breathe' as one officer places him in a chokehold and several others pin him to the ground. The New York City medical examiner's office ruled the death a homicide.

"For weeks, protesters led by the Rev. Al Sharpton have called for criminal charges against the officers involved in Garner's death. Sharpton will lead another protest march to the district attorney's office on Saturday."

"I assure the public that I am committed to conducting a fair, thorough and responsible investigation into Mr. Garner's death, and that I will go wherever the evidence takes me, without fear or favor," Staten Island District Attorney Daniel Donovan said in a statement reported by The Associated Press.

The AP notes that Officer Daniel Pantaleo, an eight-year NYPD veteran, was stripped of his gun and badge after Garner's death.

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