The New York City Police Department is outlining preparations for Ferguson-like uprising and protests as the grand jury nears their decision on whether the officer that killed Eric Garner via a vicious choke hold will be indicted for murder or manslaughter.
Garner, as you recall, was allegedly caught selling loose cigarettes illegally in the Staten Island borough of New York City when he was approached and accosted by undercover officers. Because he reportedly resisted, officer Daniel Pantaleo placed in the type of choke hold that most Americans believed was outlawed. While in the choke hold, Garner had a reported asthma attack and that, coupled with the blockage of his breathing capacity, caused his death.
The entire violent episode was captured on cellphone video and uploaded to YouTube, immediately causing a national outrage as coughed out his last words, “I can’t breathe.” Garner’s death led to widespread protests in urban areas across North America plagued by police violence.
According to the NYC media, the New York County grand jury heard from its last witnesses this past week. The NYPD is also preparing for civil unrest in case the decision sparks violent protests. In fact, NYPD were sent to Ferguson for intelligence gathering to identify “professional agitators” and share strategies on dealing with protesters.
There is great concern that Pantaleo may not be indicted because of his use of an illegal chokehold. Pantaleo’s defense team and police union lawyers contend that he used an established takedown move taught by the police department and that Garner’s death was due to his poor health.
The New York medical examiner, however, ruled Garner’s death a homicide caused by Pantaleo’s choke hold.