The Eric Garner grand jury will not indict the NYPD officer involved in the chokehold death. A Staten Island grand jury cleared Daniel Pantaleo of any wrongdoing in the caught-on-video arrest of Garner, who was peddling loose cigarettes on the street.
The NYPD grand jury came back with a "no bill" decision against after weeks of deliberation. The Eric Garner special grand jury was empaneled in September. The racially charged atmosphere which already surrounds the use of a chokehold by NYPD officer Daniel Pantaleo has caused concerns that a Ferguson riot situation could looming in New York. When asked about preparations for demonstrations and possibly riots after the Daniel Pantaleo grand jury decision, police commissioner Bill Bratton said, "We, as you might expect, are planning accordingly."
Eric Garner died on July 17, after at least five New York Police Department officers took took the 43-year-old Staten Island man to the sidewalk because he was selling "loosies" or single untaxed cigarettes. Garner was a father of six who had asthma. After the chokehold by Daniel Pantaleo, Garner reportedly lost consciousness, went into cardiac arrest, and died shortly after at a local hospital.
The Staten Island District Attorney's Office did not announce the list of potential charges against the NYPD officer to the public. Possible criminal charges resulting from the Eric Garner chokehold death as noted by some prosecutors not involved with the case have ranged from second-degree manslaughter to criminally negligent homicide, felony assault, and reckless endangerment. The coroner ruled Eric Garner's death a homicide but legal experts have largely agreed that murder charges against Daniel Pantaleo were unlikely.