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Eric Garner's Murder by NY Police Officers assisted by EMS.

Updated on August 10, 2014

The Murder of Eric Garner


Thursday July 17, 43 year old Eric Garner died Thursday afternoon as multiple NY police officers attempted to take him into custody on suspicion of selling cigarettes. His death was officially ruled a homicide due to the illegal use of the chock hold applied by a NY officer which resulted in his death.

The medical examiners autopsy suggests Garner's health problems combined with the administering of the choke-hold, while pinning him to the ground, may have caused his fatal heart attack.


Several times during the altercation Eric Garner repeatedly said “I can't breathe.” The officers response was to continue to subdue and apply the choke hold without mercy or care. The EMS team arrived and it was obvious they could care less about attempting to assist Eric Garner in his time of crisis. As a result of their lack of attention to administer to Eric Garner's condition they were placed on suspension.


A New York Times Article reported: The Civilian Complaint Review Board, an independent city agency that investigates allegations of police abuse, logged 233 allegations involving choke-holds in 2013, making up 4.4 percent of the excessive-force complaints it received.


Eric Garner, father of 6, had been arrested more than30 times, most often on charges relating to selling illegal cigarettes. Mr. Garner often felt target and harassed by NY police officers unfair. This harassment was made evident by Mr. Garner, in 2007, filing a complaint in federal court accusing a police officer of conducting a cavity search of him on the street, “digging his fingers in my rectum in the middle of the street” as people walked by.


On the day Eric Garner died he confronted the police officers with chilling words that came to fruition in the worst way: “I’m tired of it,” he said. “This stops today.” Prior to the NY officers arrest attempt Garner told officers: “I didn’t do nothing. Every time you see me, you want to harass me, you want to stop me.”


Moments before his death Eric Garner had reportedly intervened resulting in the ending a potential altercation. Who knew moments later the NY police department's officers actions would end his life.


The Reverend Al Sharpton and director Spike Lee quickly commented on the injustice of Eric Garner's death. Spike Lee released a video of the movie he released in 1989 “Do The Right Thing” which brought to the forefront this issue of racism and police brutality with the death of a character in the movie administered by NY police department officers using the choke-hold. After the murder of the character in the movie, the officer callously threw him in the backseat of the patrol vehicle-dead. Art imitates life and in 2014 yet again it was a choke-hold and the EMS that could care less about Eric Garner or his 6 children and his grandchildren doing little to nothing to administer perhaps life saving techniques. Suspicion of selling untaxed cigarettes apparently is justification for death.


Former police officer Eric Garner summed up the situation the best when he said “no one tried to save him.”


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