Cut to 31:45 into the video see the beginning of the press conference.
Mayor Bill de Blasio issued a statement yesterday extending his condolences to Garner’s family and promising he and Police Commissioner Bill Bratton would investigate the incident. He added, “We are harnessing all resources available to the City to ensure a full and thorough investigation of the circumstances of this tragic incident.” De Blasio and Bratton are set to hold a live-streamed press conference this afternoon at 3:30. It’ll play above when it’s available.
Public Advocate Letitia James also issued a statement, pointing out that NYPD police prohibits chokeholds. “The video raises serious questions and it is important that we review whether departmental procedures were followed. There must be a swift investigation of this horrific incident,” she said.
Communities United for Police Reform, a group that frequently calls attention to bad policing practices against New York communities of color, is furious. They, too, issued a statement, calling Garner’s death “unacceptable and tragic,” adding it’s “yet another example of unnecessary police encounters resulting from broken windows-style policing that targets New Yorkers of color – in this case escalating with fatal consequences.”
Chokeholds have been prohibited by NYPD policy since 1992. In 1994, Anthony Baez, a 29-year-old Bronx security guard and college student who was also asthmatic, died after he was placed in a chokehold during a chaotic arrest. The incident reportedly began when Baez’s football hit a police department patrol car.
Here is the video of Garner’s arrest that was posted to Live Leak. It’s upsetting. Be warned.