Grand jury set to review Eric Garner NYPD chokehold death



A grand jury is set to review the chokehold death of Eric Garner by a New York police officer, the Richmond County (NY) District Attorney announced Tuesday.

The controversial death was ruled a homicide last month by the Medical Examiner's office, and community leaders have since been calling for charges after Garner died following an arrest for selling illegal cigarettes.

"Compression of his neck (chokehold), compression of his chest and prone positioning during physical restraint by police" led to the 43-year-old Garner's death, the coroner said in a written report.

"I have determined that it is appropriate to present evidence regarding the circumstances of [Garner's] death to a Richmond County Grand Jury," District Attorney Daniel Donovan, Jr. said in a statement.

"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."

NYPD policy bans chokeholds. The July 17 death set off protests and demands for justice across the city.

Video from the arrest clearly shows officer Daniel Pantaleo from the scene choking Garner as other cops helped throw him to the ground before cuffing and arresting him.

"I can't breathe, I can't breathe" Garner repeatedly shouted.

The 300-plus-pound man is then shown lying on the ground unconscious for minutes until paramedics arrive, no attempts to resuscitate the father of six appear to have been made.

Both Pantaleo and another officer have since been placed on modified duty while awaiting the outcome of the investigation.

Rev. Al Sharpton is planning to lead a Saturday march through Staten Island in support of Garner's family, according to reports.

The march will come two weeks to the day after unarmed black Missouri teen Michael Brown, whose funeral is set for August 25, was shot dead by Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson.

Raw: Eric Garner's Wife Collapses at Rally in NY
Raw: Eric Garner's Wife Collapses at Rally in NY

Related links:
Police, protestors collide again in Ferguson
National Guard arrive in Ferguson
Timeline: Michael Brown's death and the chaos that has gripped Ferguson since