Friday, December 26, 2014

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The Call Blog: De Blasio Defends Bratton; Officer, EMS Workers On Modified Duty

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The second video is more disturbing than the first. And that's saying a lot.

The fallout over the death of Eric Garner continues. The 43-year-old died shortly after several police officers wrestled him to the ground during an arrest on Staten Island last week. Plainclothes officer Daniel Pantaleo, who is seen on video with his arm around Garner's neck, had his gun and badge taken from him. And sources tell NY1 four EMS workers from Richmond University Medical Center on Staten Island are on modified duty while investigators probe their actions during the emergency response.

A new seven-minute video posted on YouTube shows no one giving Garner any medical help while he's motionless on the ground. In addition, Pantaleo waves at the camera while an eyewitness shoots the video on a cell phone. Speaking in Italy, Mayor de Blasio defended Police Commissioner Bill Bratton by saying he has "absolute faith in his judgment." Closer to home, a small group of protesters outside City Hall called for Bratton's resignation. What do you say?

Do you have "absolute faith" in Commissioner Bratton? Are you confident the NYPD and Staten Island District Attorney will conduct an impartial investigation in the death of Eric Garner? Do you agree with the decision to place some of the responding emergency workers on modified duty pending the outcome of this investigation? What questions do you want answered in this case?

Send your thoughts using the link above.

The force didn't fit the crime. It's a shame that he died over cigarettes? Something has got to give with this scenario.

Ms Keith

Really, the nyc police are way out out of control. Don't tell me that it is a white black issue. Nonsense. These green un trained cops killed a guy because he was making a dollar illegally. The courts let people in this country kill other citizens and only give them a few years in jail. The super cops in NY think a guy breaking the law, selling illegal cigarettes, In I instant justice, is killing him. Just like most things in this country, the tobacco lobby wins, viva la vive, big business in the great USA.

Bill from the village.

What's going to be the outcome of this case.?The officers get aquited, and the family has to go for a Civil suit? What's new? What should happen is if there is fowl play in any arrest the officers should lose time and any funds that are allocated to their pensions should start being reduced.


All I kud say is it must be true when in the 1980's they said in the news that they lowered the standards for various reasons! But these police were ANIMALS.


Watching the 2nd video of him on the ground handcuffed, non responsive and the officers going thru his pockets is very disturbing. Why did they bother to call for EMTs because when they got there the did nothing. It's so disgusting the total lack of regards for human life. The guy that choked him waving at the end is absolutely disgusting. The PBA president saying knee jerk reaction, what video was he was watching? This scary, police and EMTs are suppose to help.


The choke hold is not what killed him it was the negligence that came after the fact. Nypd and ems both to blame.

Just wanted to remind the caller that stated only black men die in the hands of nypd. Let me remind about the case a few years ago in crown heights with the hasidic jew with the hammer that cops shot and killed.


I think that the incident retaining to the black male from Staten Island is completely unacceptable. Don't get me wrong, the area where this tragedy happened isn't so great. They should have been looking for drugs or weapon sales- more severe and life threatening crimes. The police department should be doing a better job at keeping citizens safe. As for the officers being put on desk duty- it's acceptable but in the long run i believe they will be incarcerated or laid off.

Brandon from Staten Island

Talk about a knee jerk reaction! The reaction of Pat Lynch sounds like he pulls his comments from a rolodex. He acts as if cops are infallible an don't make mistakes

Judy J

I believe that what the officers did were very unacceptable and unexplainable. I believe that the officers need to be fired!

Tae From queens

I was a policeman in the United Kingdom & am visiting NYC for my annual vacation. I have seen the NY police in service over the last 23 years and their conduct on many occasions is completely inappropriate to the situation. I’ve watched both videos & quite simply ….. shame on the NY police service. Disgraceful !!!


It's also disturbing that none of the police seem sympathetic for the dying man on the ground. The wave to the camera was the icing on the cake.


The problem is that there are no punishments or sanctions for police misconduct. The officers should be suspended without pay until an investigation and determination. If found innocent pay would be restored retroactively. If found guilty officer should be dismissed and lose his pension. With such a policy misconduct would be reduced.


My condolences go out to the family and I truly feel for them. The injustice here is blatantly obvious and this is sadly the case in many situations. The fact that the officers continued to detain him while he kept repeating his inability to breathe is sickening. The officers are trained to detain any suspect and their method this time around was quite frankly inexcusable. They could have simply given him a citation. They should be held responsible for this. We should not be afraid of officers. There are far worse people out there selling cocaine and heroin. Go after those people.


When you asked the caller if he lost faith in the NYPD from this one incident, my first thought was this is not the first time. Too many incidents go unreported, and the ones the get into the headlines always involves a man of color who dies at the hands of officers. It's a systematic problem within the NYPD that needs to be addressed. Cops must be held accountable, no more slap on the wrists.

Danisa A.

They should fired this officer with out pension and also make him do some time in jail, but pretty sure that won't happen because they always do whatever they want to.


My prayers go to the family. The video proves that mayor diblaso, police commissioner bratton and the Staten Island DA should get rid of this officer and all those officers and ems personnel without pension, and the officer who waved and smiled should be charged with manslaughter. Why is it ok for cops to unjustifiably take a life and be allowed to continue upholding a position designed to protect and serve? Will our mayor and commissioner give this family peace and justice?

staten island

The police officers need to be fire mediately this people Are doing so much crazy things on black community thank you


Why is everyone keep saying that Mr. Garner was under the suspicion of selling loosie's? If you watch the video, Mr. Garner was clearly stating his case that all he did was break up a fight. I think everyone should set the record straight and get the 911 tape that proved why the cops were there. They had no right to harass Mr. Garner like that.


Mr. Garner resisted and there is no other job that is more dangerous than a police officer day in and day out. He should of compied he is an adult. His behavior was erratic and In my day you respected the police. Why didn't the person taking the video stop mr garner and calm him down. His so called friend.

Thank you.

These police are responsible for the death of this man. All police involved in this should not be getting a paycheck. The police officer in charge should have intervened. Not one of them stepped in to help this man. They should all be up for criminal charges. It is murder. It's Black and white. No gray area. They should be not only fired, but have serious criminal charges against them.


The mayor should not be on vacation at this time. The city is in crisis mode. I am disappointed by his action and feel it speaks volumes.

Jackson Heights, NY

As a citizen I dont think its coincidence that I have been pulled over by police(was not given a ticket). Another time my daughter was in a car with her friends and was pulled over (they were told they looked suspicious, again no ticket was given), another time my teenage son was in the subway and the cops harassed him(hes only 14) again no ticket. The common denominator? We are hispanic.


Let's switch the this thing around .. Let it had been a Blackman who got an officer in a choke hold and he died .. The whole police system would be up in arms.. Especially lynch the PBS head .. I think he is the worse never has he came out when a cop was wrong and said anything .. Yet he lamb- base anyone who does anything against the police...

Tony from Harlem


Let's be honest with each other. The police in America are virtually a subsidiary of organized crime. They are very efficient at making sure that no junkie goes to bed without his fix and they are well paid for it. We need a new Knapp Commission immediately. Also required is a police commissioner who has the courage to stand up to corruption.

Michael in Greenpoint

The sad and ugly truth is new york city and state will justify all of these actions so at the end of the day they dont have to pay this family in what is and could be a multi million dollar law suite, and the governor and commissioner need to open their blind eyes and charge the officers and ems workers with murder, when theres a shooting or robbery you never have as many cops on scene your lucky if there are 4 but 6 officers for selling cigarettes lets be real


The Nypd needs to take responsibility and retrain officers on how to deal with the communities they police but when will the community take responsibility if we as a community could rally to stop crime in our own community the way we rally to stop police brutality we would be in a totally different place and wouldn't have to rely on Nypd to flood our communities like we're animals because we are not

Vaughn from Brooklyn

What is driving we crazy Nobody! Proposed - when policeman ask you to freeze, you HAVe to FREEZE. And don't blame police- they are doing their job. If you not following request of referee on the football field, you will be out of the game, without any discussion. You should teach people to following police orders - it will solve the problem. Is someone should propose that.


The "broken windows" strategy is to deem "violation" offenses equal to "criminal" offenses, with the intent of ultimately preventing criminal offenses. The object is to arrest beggars, dancers on the subway, loose cigarette seller's etc. and handle them as criminals.

This is the result of the "broken windows" strategy, a man dead due to improper policy procedure and supervision, overwhelming aggression, and disdain for civilians A policy racist by its very nature; "broken windows" you find where? In poorer neighborhoods whose residents are disproportionately Black/Latino....


Dear Mr. Schiumo:

There must be psychological profiling of all police officers before they are permitted to become police officers.

As for the death of Mr. Gardner, the only way to obtain justice is for every person of color to initiate an economic boycott of all businesses in the city. Do not frequent the department stores, restaurants, night clubs, movie theatres or any shopping centers in the city. Only spend your money in your local neighborhoods. The city must be brought to its economic knees in order to obtain justice.

Flushing, Queens

The NYPD killed one of their own officers in a friendly fire incident back in 2009. The murdered officer's name was Omar Edwards. Because Edwards was black, the officer who killed him automatically assumed he was the suspect, when in fact, he wasn't. Edwards was chasing a guy who broke into his car. A tape showed that NYPD officers stood over Edwards after he was shot and while he was handcuffed and dying from his injuries. In the end, the officer who shot Edwards was cleared of any wrong doing. Unfortunately, what happened last week with the NYPD does not surprise me in any way.

Maria - UWS

I agree that this situation may not have been handled correctly, but a crime was committed and the NYPD responded to enforce the law. What I do not agree with are the masses rallying against the NYPD as a racist regime... A few bad apples shouldn't spoil the bunch. They're New York's Finest for a reason and many seem to forget to good they do every day with no recognition.

Staten Island

This is really crazy, sad and scary! ! The Mayor and Police commissioner said that Eric was pronounced dead at the hospital. The EMS workers said he was alive at the scene! ! The video shows that he was dead on the scene. The EMS workers stood there and didn't do anything. No CPR. NOW WHO CAN WE TRUST WITH MY AND YOUR LIFE. You call the police to help you they come and hurt you. You call the EMS to help you and they and they stay and let you die! !! So many mistakes and negligence on both sides police and EMS! ! And the Mayor and Police commissioner are protecting they own (asses). Instead of protecting us and giving us justice. There need to be justice and consequences for these people, That we depend on and rely on). We are paying our taxes to help them kill us..Am so scared and worried that there is no one to save us and protect us. . (God helps us all). The video speaks for itself. Share and review and come to your own conclusions of what really happened and what didn't happen to help him (Eric). And this is for the Mayor and Police commissioner, and to those cops,, EMT workers ( SHAME ON YOU ALL) . SO TELL US MAYOR AND POLICE COMMISSIONER, WHO CAN WE THE PEOPLE OF NEW YORK CALL FOR ASSISTANCE. ARE ME SAFE CALLING POLICE AND EMS FOR HELP OR TO LET THEM KILL US. .


I believe the police officer should be on modified duty until the hearing which should be done soon since its all on tape including the officer waving and smiling after he administered the deadly and illegal choke hold. Hopefully justice will prevail and he will serve time in prison or at the very least be fired with no pension.


I agree with most of the callers. Police like that should be fired, they should have no right to be on desk duty.. Many bad cops hide behind the blue wall aka shield and get away with killing.... giving actual good cops bad names.


bring back the black panthers we need protection! C'mon! Here we go again! I am a young black Herasee, not surprise. Its the same old story. Cops will get away. It horrible!!!!!


Crystal-Red Hook West: I would like to see CCRB revamped. As a retired civilian with a retired sister that was a Detective, I made a complaint on my Lt. CCRB claimed he didn’t work for NYPD & closed the complaint. It is this type of investigation that allows bad officers to stay on the job.

The officers should be fired in my opinion modified duties in a joke. They acted inappropriately. A lot are not fit to be officers. Same with the EMS workers, get rid of the bad apples in the police dept now!


This sort of behavior of NYPD will continue,unless officers who are being sued have to pay judgement out of pocket. It doesn't cost them a dime, nor effects them in a way where they would really think about their actions. As of now us tax payers are the one's who pay for their Malfeasance. Laws need to be changed so it will hit them where it hurts, in their POCKETS.

Prayers to Garner Family.

James, Harlem

It is very sad, and most unfortunate, that this man died while officers were struggling to apprehend him. But before we all armchair quarterback the mistakes that may have been made by police, and first responders, if we go overboard in criticism, and punishment, all we are going to do is put our police force in an overall mindset, towards not reacting at all when it comes to crime, and apprehension. Trust me, as a New York City Correction Officer who now works for a department that allows the inmates to rule, because it is to easy for an officer to be punished for excessive force, i ask the citicens of New York City: do we want our neighborhoods to be ruled by the criminals for the very same reasons why they rule the confines of our jails.

Calle M.
Five Towns, NY

From Michael, Jamaica: The actions of the EMS workers were hideous and inexcusable. No question these 4 people should be removed from their jobs, along with the 2 police officers who should have their badges removed. As far as Bill Braton is concerned, i do not think he will be fired nor do i believe he will resign. I am surprised that people are asking for his firing or his resignation, to me it makes zero sense.

Though I don't agree on the choke hold method and the police are not supposed to use it and I feel for the family but the bigger question is why is this guy on the street if he's been arrested I am not sure how many times but I think like over 15?



watching this video made me sick. It was another example of depraved indifference towards human life by people who should of known better. Desk duty? The cops responsible for this dispicaple behavior should have been suspended just as their EMS colleagues were. We are fortunate someone had the good sense to capture this episode on video. What about all the other atrocities the cops commit without a camera present???

As for an investigation - I don't have much faith in the city investigating anything. Their bias is most apparent.

Upper west

Another senseless death at the hands of the NYPD. I don't have any faith in Bratton, he appears to be justifying this horrifying death by saying that Garner had a "rap sheet" for selling loose cigarettes. Really? So he deserved to die for this? I'm not surprised that the EMT's didn't give Garner medical help, in their eyes he was just a black criminal. Diblasio lost credibility with me and other New Yorkers for taking a vacation while this tragedy is being investigated. Most ordinary workers don't usually get vacation time at new job until they've been there at least a year. And certainly they can't leave the country while a crisis is underway. Shame on Diblasio and Bratton!

Meryl from Manhattan

People all over the world should be outraged with this since less death. Americans care more for animals than black Americans...This is racism in clear view. Barney Madroff stole millions why wasn't he approached in this manner........oh! I forgot ..he was rich.......

Mary from staten island


Bratton shouldn't be given the dignity of resigning. He should be fired for defending those killer cops and EMS personnel. Bratton's true colors are showing.

The cops should be arrested, charged with assault, homicide and murder. They should be jailed immediately.

One additional comment about De Blank and his comment about Bratton. That is, "Faith is the belief in something for which there is no evidence." That certainly applies in this case.

Port Richmond, SI

BRATTON & BLASIO... SHAME, SHAME. This is another tragedy caused by NY's Finest. I'm speechless!!!! YOU BETTER WAKE UP. What's wrong....quotas are too low???? This "act now, think about it later" behavior among your officers stems from the top on down to the newest rookies on the block. We do believe, not all but MANY cops will continue to seek out every opportunity to vent their frustrations and aggressions whenever possible, so they don't have to TAKE IT HOME.

BRATTON-----> When is this badge of brutality going to stop? How many more lives must be cut short? This is a disgrace and everyone regardless of race, religion, economic status, etc. should be outraged. Eric was murdered for selling loose cigarets? MY GOD!!! If that was my brother, my head would be in a different place right now.

To the family: I hope you receives due justice for your loss and hire the best attorneys in the state.

RIP, young man.


Hi John,

The story I heard was that Eric Garner had just broken up a fight and that was the reason law enforcement went over to him and he was selling loosies to the children. He has more than 30 some odd arrests so he did not want to get arrested and he did not want to go with them. Then the altercation happened. Why is Sharpton putting his 2 cents in and inciting a riot and coming to a conclusion without anyone looking into this case. So now the EMS is involved and we will just have to wait for all the facts to come out. Garner could have exhausted himself trying to break a fight before his altercation with law enforcement.

Meanwhile this city is becoming more and more everyday a lawless town.

Thank you John,

Hi John;

I have NO faith in Bill Bratton. He should resign. Everyone involved with Eric Garner's death should have been suspended or modified (no gun, no shield). Pat Lynch, Union President is defending the chokehold officer because he knows Bratton is weak and will go along with anything the Unions say. If Bratton speaks the truth regarding Mr. Garner's death, the Unions will turn on him. Worse Bratton sees nothing wrong with the Officer's actions.

Dan Donovan is so worried about being re-elected that I doubt he will indict any of these officers. The Brooklyn DA won't process marijuana arrests and Dan Donovan will prosecute "loosie" sales? Let's face it, most of his constituents are cops and firemen (although cops and firemen don't vote...maybe their families do).

I am shocked at the lack of outrage by the City Council and the general public. I think Deblasio went ahead with his vacation with the hopes that this will blow over.

As for the EMT's, talking to a man who is on the verge of death doesn't help. Perhaps a defibrillator would have.

Midtown East

Hi John

The first question i have is why the heck did the Mayor go to Italy on vacation? he knew there was going to be fallout from what happened with Mr Garner, Commisoner Bratton, Officer Pantaleo and the four EMS workers should be suspended ASAP. While Mr Garner was laying motionless on the ground someone should of been giving him medical help he said he couldn't breathe, I hope the Staten island DA bring criminal charges against everyone that was involved in Mr Garner's death

Some parents don't think.. Why would any parent leave a baby carriage alone on a subway platform to throw something away in the garbage anything can happen take the baby carriage with you so it won't roll on to the train tracks god bless the good samaritan that saved the baby


Is there anyone in the EMS supervision chain of command being called to explain the actions of the EMT crew that responded? Is the EMT service not a part of the FDNY? Where is the Fire Commissioner? What is HIS EMTs reporting, to HIM. Was Mr. Garner already dead on their arrival? If so, this should be in their reports. If not, they should be called upon to explain their lack of efforts to administer ANY medical aid.

CG, Clinton Hill, Brooklyn




Key points I want to make are the following.

1) There is no evidence that the incident was racially motivated - not racial slurs were uttered.

2) The police over-reacted to a minor crime.

3) The man should have been given a summons. The officers' attempt to arrest him was unwarranted.

4) Although the man resisted arrest, this still did not warrant the apparent choke-hold which is never permitted.

5) The police officers and EMT workers who failed to resuscitate the man should be fired, lose their pensions and be subject to criminal penalties.

6) This incident does not argue against police enforcement of quality of life laws which are very necessary to maintain a civilized society - keep the squeegee people off the streets, the acrobat performers out of our subway cars, etc.

Thank you,
Rob from Woodside, Queens.

My deepest regards are with the family and friends.. Such a horrific loss of life... It troubles me as a young man in NYC whom witness these activities on a daily basis in my community. .. such always go unreported. .. it seems that an horrific nature needs to be the result of an altercation for the PD to be scrutinized. .. but we see videos on facebook; on twitter; on YouTube on a daily basis that goes unreported. .. The Commissioner stated that this was an isolated case... in reality... it was an isolated media coverage case... but this happens more than 10 times a day every day... during day light hours police officers are more restricted. .. despite the case of Eric Garner.... but it is the hours of 8pm to 5am... when there are few witnesses on the street to identify NYPD harassment..... It's a sad day in America when the people whom takes an Oath to protect us are the ones whom are hurting us...


Why haven't the police learned from past incidents, such as The Amadou Diallo case and the Abner Louima case and corrected their behavior accordingly? This latest tragedy creates ill will towards the police and makes them appear as instruments of terror in the eyes of the people, instead of kind, and wise bastions of society. In years past a policeman was viewed as a "friend" of the community. This terrible tragedy will now make that same policeman appear a "fiend" in the community.

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