After Four Years, NYPD Moves To Discipline Officer Who Killed Eric Garner


After a four-year delay, the NYPD is finally ready to take disciplinary action against the cop who killed Eric Garner, the department announced Thursday (July 19). Officer Daniel Pantaleo is expected to be served with “departmental charges” within the next two weeks, CNN reports.

The NYPD’s decision follows conflicting statements from the department and the U.S. Justice Department in regards to the why the process was delayed. Earlier in the week, the NYPD sent a letter to the DOJ stating that the department was tired of waiting on the feds to move forward. The DOJ claims that the NYPD has been was cleared to file charges since April.

According to the New York Daily NewsPantaleo and Kizzy Adonis, a black female NYPD sergeant who was in charge the day Garner died, will face a public hearing early next year. Stuart London, Pantaleo’s lawyer, told CNN that his client “looks forward to being fully vindicated.”

On the morning of July 17, 2014, a group plainclothes officers (including Pantaleo) approached Garner as he stood on a public sidewalk in Staten Island, N.Y. The cops accused Garner of illegally selling cigarettes, but according to a friend and witness who recorded the incident, the 43-year-old father of six had just broken up a fight. After a short exchange with Garner, Pantaloe puts him in a chokehold. Several other officers are seen on video helping Pantaloe subdue and handcuff Garner, who was asthmatic and can be heard saying, “I can’t breathe” before going unconscious. Police did not attempt to resuscitate Garner as he lay dying on the sidewalk. An ambulance arrived several minutes later. Garner died after suffering a heart attack while being transported to Richmond University Medical Center. A medical examiner ruled his death a homicide.

In December 2014, the DOJ opened an investigation into Garner’s death, but the probe has stalled over the years. A grand jury also failed to indict Pantaloe.

In 2015, the city of New York reached a $5.9 million settlement with Garner’s family. Garner’s eldest daughter, Erica Garner, died from a heart attack last year.


Tags: Eric Garner