Source | Huffington Post
A police officer who choked an unarmed man to death on a public sidewalk will not face trial. This is the second recent high-profile case in which a grand jury declined to indict a white police officer who had killed an unarmed black civilian — first Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri, and now Eric Garner on Staten Island, New York.
Those decisions underscore a fundamental truth about police force in America: that the laws are deeply stacked against the possibility that police officers will be charged, let alone convicted, of killing civilians, particularly African-Americans.
In Garner’s case, the medical examiner ruled his death at the hands of the New York City Police Department a homicide. Garner had repeatedly pleaded that he couldn’t breathe while an officer held him in a chokehold, which is itself barred by NYPD rules. The homicide occurred in broad daylight and was filmed from close range.
Police officers Darren Wilson and Daniel Pantaleo were treated much differently from typical killers.
Prosecutors have wide discretion regarding what evidence to provide a grand jury and need only show that there is enough to believe charges are warranted. In Wilson’s case, the transcripts show that the prosecutor took pains to present as much conflicting evidence as possible, instead of relying on the multiple witnesses who said the officer shot Brown while his hands were up. Typically, such conflicting evidence is presented in public to a trial jury, not in private to a grand jury. Wilson’s prosecutor also did not lay out a cohesive narrative of the shooting, instead dumping a lot of evidence before the jurors and leaving them to sort it out.
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#ICantBreathe: Protestors Demand Justice For Eric Garner
1. Eric Garner's Life Will Not Be Stolen In Vain1 of 31
2. Eric Garner Supporters Stop NYC's Busiest Commuters In Their Tracks2 of 31
3. Grand Central Station Die-In3 of 31
4. Protestors In NYC Demonstrating A Die-In4 of 31
5. Don't Shoot. I'm Black.5 of 31
6. Justice Denied6 of 31
7. Reverend Al Sharpton Marches7 of 31
8. Police Standoff With Protestors8 of 31
9. A Man Gets Gets Arrested While Protesting9 of 31
10. A Protestor Gets Arrested10 of 31
11. Ferguson Is Everywhere11 of 31
12. I Can't Breathe12 of 31
13. NYC Die-In13 of 31
14. I Might Be Next14 of 31
15. United We Stand15 of 31
16. NYC Protestors Run16 of 31
17. NYPD Officers Block Protestors17 of 31
18. Eric Garner Died Because Of Loose Cigarettes18 of 31
19. Grand Central Station Die-In19 of 31
20. White Man Chokes Himself For Eric Garner20 of 31
21. Demilitarize The Police21 of 31
22. Protestors Blocking An Intersection In Washington, D.C.22 of 31
23. Enough Is Enough23 of 31
24. Black Lives Matter24 of 31
25. Protestors Interrupt Commuters Trying To Get Home25 of 31
26. Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony Attended By Protestors26 of 31
27. Grand Central Station27 of 31
28. Teaching Our Children Their Lives Matter28 of 31
29. Tears For Eric Garner29 of 31
30. Black Lives Matter30 of 31
31. Philadelphia's Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony Attending By Eric Garner Supporters31 of 31