The family of Eric Garner is pleading for peace after two police officers were killed, execution style, in Brooklyn’s Bedford-Stuveysant neighborhood. Officers Wenjian Liu and Rafael Ramos were ambushed and shot while sitting in their squad cars, and did not have time to draw their guns.
Gwen Carr, mother of Eric Garner, the man killed by a police officer who placed him in a choke hold but was not indicted, stated she did not want her son’s named used in connection with violence.
“I’m standing here in sorrow about losing those two police officers.”
Garner’s wife, Esaw Garner, offered condolences to the families of the officers.
“I know what they’re going through to lose a loved one right before the holidays.”
The Rev. Al Sharpton, President of the National Action Network, met with the Garner family as they made statements. He also told reporters those who blame Mayor Bill de Blasio, civil rights leaders, and non-violent protesters are “misguided,” and prefer to accuse them rather than deal with “an ugly spirit all of us need to fight.”
Sharpton also added he is now receiving death threats.
I am outraged at the killing of 2 police officers in Brooklyn. That is why we stress non violence as the only way to fight for justice.
— Reverend Al Sharpton (@TheRevAl) December 20, 2014
Investigators are examining social media posts by the alleged gunman, Ismaaiyl Brinsley, 28, indicating that the killings were retribution for the deaths of New York’s Garner and Michael Brown of Ferguson, Missouri.
President Obama released a statement condemning the killing of the officers.
“Two brave men won’t be going home to their loved ones tonight, and for that, there is no justification. The officers who serve and protect our communities risk their own safety for our every single day – and they deserve our respect and gratitude every single day.”
Attorney General Attorney Holder called the attack “cowardly,” and stated community-police alliances must be formed.
“Our nation must always honor the valor — and the sacrifices — of all law enforcement officers with a steadfast commitment to keeping them safe. This means forging closer bonds between officers and the communities they serve, so that public safety is not a cause that is served by a courageous few, but a promise that’s fulfilled by police officials and citizens working side by side.”
Reportedly, Brinsley shot his ex-girlfriend outside her apartment in Baltimore, Maryland, before boarding a bus to New York. He then called the victim’s mother to apologize, and she alerted the Baltimore police, per New York Chief of Detectives Robert K. Boyce.
Baltimore County police determined Brinsley was using his ex-girlfriend’s phone to post messages to Instagram threatening the NYPD. One of the messages was a direct threat.
“I’m putting wings on pigs today. They take 1 of ours … let’s take 2 of theirs.”
Bystanders report the gunman asked them to watch before he shot into the police car.
“Watch what I’m gonna do.”
After shooting the officers, Brinsley ran into a subway station and shot himself.
In Brooklyn’s Bedford-Stuyvesant neighborhood, Brooklyn borough president Eric Adams asked demonstrators to remember the fallen police officers.
“I’m asking all of those to hold off on any form of protest until these officers are laid to rest in a peaceful manner.”
Eric Garner’s family also asked that protesters remain calm and respectful.
[Image: Washington Post]