Film director Spike Lee has erected a memorial outside his Fort Greene studio for Eric Garner, the 43-year-old father of six who died while being arrested by police in Staten Island.
Garner died on July 18 after police placed him in a chokehold, an illegal move, for selling loose cigarettes.
The memorial, a large-scale image of Garner with the words “I can’t breathe,” was created by artist Adrian Franks and hangs outside the 40 Acres and a Mule studio at 70 South Elliott Pl.
An autopsy ruled that Garner’s July 18 death was a homicide by a chokehold, but the city’s police unions denied this.
Michael Bailey, 41, who works at a bank in lower Manhattan said he thought the officer who appears to place Garner in a chokehold, Daniel Pantaleo, should “absolutely” be charged with murder.
“It’s homicide,” Bailey said.
He added that he was “stunned” after he first saw the video of Garner’s arrest.
Lee publicly condemned the actions on the NYPD regarding Garner’s death on Twitter. He also posted a video mashup of Garner’s death mixed with clips of police choking Radio Raheem to death from his movie “Do The Right Thing.”
Garner’s death sparked a national protest against the NYPD and its practices of racial profiling and excessive force. The department’s Internal Affairs unit is investigating the incident.
Garner’s death will not be forgotten.
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