NYPD officer accused of choking Eric Garner fired
- Published: 19 August 2019
- The New York police officer accused of fatally choking Eric Garner in 2014 has been fired and will not receive his NYPD pension, Commissioner James O'Neill said Monday.
"It is clear that Daniel Pantaleo can no longer effectively serve as a New York City Police officer," he said.
Officer Daniel Pantaleo was found guilty in a disciplinary trial earlier this month of using a chokehold on Garner, the New York man whose final words, "I can't breathe," became a rallying cry for the Black Lives Matter movement.
The departmental administrative judge officially recommended Pantaleo be fired. O'Neill, an officer for 34 years, cited that recommendation repeatedly in his announcement on Monday, but he said the decision to terminate Pantaleo was still not easy.
The decision comes more than five years after police tried to arrest the 43-year-old father of six, who was allegedly selling loose cigarettes illegally on Staten Island. In video of the arrest, Pantaleo can be seen wrapping one arm around Garner's shoulder and the other around his neck before jerking him back and pulling him to the ground.
As Pantaleo forces Garner's head into the sidewalk, Garner could be heard saying "I can't breathe. I can't breathe." He died shortly afterward.