The video of NYPD officers placing a 43-year-old man in a chokehold minutes before his death has gone viral. Many have responded with angry cries of racial injustice, and others are even more upset after finding that a preliminary internal report makes no mention of the illegal move.
The report also fails to mention Garner’s repeated statements about not being able to breathe and the report states that he was not in “great distress.”
Officers appear to have coordinated a cover-up of any incriminating details. Upon being questioned, Sgt. Dhanan Saminath stated that officers had Garner in cuffs, “maintaining control of him” and that he “did not appear to be in great distress.” Sgt. Kizzy Adonis echoed Saminath’s sentiments stating, “the perpetrator’s condition did not seem serious and that he did not appear to get worse.” Additional statements from the report include that Garner resisted arrest and that Garner became unresponsive while being handcuffed but that he was observed breathing. Again, no mention of the illegal chokehold is made. The report also states that Garner allegedly did not go into cardiac arrest until he was placed on a stretcher by EMTs.
Witnesses of Garner’s arrest give a much more violent account than the one given by officers. Witness Taisha Allen says she saw officers strike Garner in the head and shoulder after he was already on the ground and telling them he couldn’t breathe.
The possibility of a criminal investigation is pending. The officer, Daniel Pantaleo who placed Garner in the chokehold, has a history of civil rights complaints filed against him. He has since been stripped of his badge and gun.
Check back for updates.
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