Chris Bundas –
Eric Garner had both hands in the air as New York police officers were trying to arrest him.
Four NYPD officers bring Eric Garner down — one cop grabbed him in a chokehold and Garner can be heard gasping, “I can’t breathe! I can’t breathe!” One of the officers then uses his hands to push the 43-year-old’s face into the sidewalk.
He died of an apparent heart attack in the botched arrest that happened Thursday.
Garner’s alleged crime? Selling “loosies” – black market, untaxed single cigarettes.
Now Garner’s friends and family are furious at what happened, and New York’s mayor says the video is “very troubling.” But a police organization says the officer should be given the benefit of the doubt.
In a Sunday appeal from the pulpit, the Rev. Al Sharpton demanded justice for Eric Garner but added that citizens who attack police officers also should be held accountable.
The officer linked to what the police commissioner has said was an apparent chokehold has been stripped of his gun and badge and placed on desk duty. Chokeholds are banned under department policy. Garner’s cause of death has yet to be determined.
Court records show that within the past two years, three men sued officer Daniel over allegedly unlawful, racially motivated arrests. Garner was black.