Justice for Eric Garner

Support Justice for Eric Garner

On September 24, 2020, six years after the killing of Eric Garner, NY Supreme Court Justice Joan A. Madden ruled in Eric Garner's family's favor in their request for a judicial inquiry. The judge ruled that a public judicial inquiry into potential violations and neglect of duty by the de Blasio administration, including former NYPD Commissioner James O'Neill, and other top police officials arising from the death of Eric Garner, can proceed.

In August 2019, Eric Garner's mother, sister, and Ramarley Graham's mother, along with CPR members, announced a petition to the New York Supreme Court. The petition demanded a judicial inquiry into the violations and neglect of duty by Mayor Bill de Blasio, his administration, and others related to the unjust killing of Eric Garner, the cover-up that continues to this day, and the corresponding failure to discipline officers for misconduct in a meaningful or timely manner.

Mayor de Blasio responded to this request for justice by filing a motion to dismiss the petition. New York State Supreme Court Judge Joan A. Madden heard arguments in the city's motion to dismiss in August 2020. 

Parties to the petition include Gwen Carr, Ellisha Flagg Garner, Constance Malcolm, mother of Ramarley Graham, Loyda Colon of Justice Committee, Joo-Hyun Kang of Communities United for Police Reform, Monifa Bandele of MomsRising, Kesi Foster of Make the Road, and Mark Winston Griffith of Brooklyn Movement Center. They are represented by Alvin Bragg, Gideon Oliver, and Melissa Toback Levin.

August 2019 marked five long years of obstruction and refusal, to take action by Mayor Bill de Blasio and the Department to hold the NYPD involved in Eric Garner’s killing accountable, and tireless organizing by the Gwen Carr, Garner’s mother, Ellisha Flagg Garner, Garner’s sister, the Garner family, and community organizations and advocates, Officer Daniel Pantaleo was fired. His firing followed a CCRB prosecuted disciplinary trial that concluded in June 2019 which found him having violated Department procedures including a decades-long ban on the chokehold maneuver.

Throughout the entire process, Mayor de Blasio has refused to be transparent, withholding records and the names of NYPD officers involved, delaying disciplinary processes and attributed his own inaction on the Department of Justice, when in fact other officers have been disciplined (and even fired) in the past without waiting for a DOJ investigation or prosecution.

The fight for justice for Eric Garner is not yet over. Of the multiple NYPD on scene that day, only one other besides Pantaleo, Sergeant Kizzy Adonis, has faced any disciplinary action, losing just 20 vacation days without having to admit any wrongdoing, after cutting a deal with the Department. 

Help lift up Eric Garner’s family’s demands: 

  • That ALL NYPD involved in misconduct related to the killing of Eric Garner (including those whose names may have not yet been released by the NYPD) be held accountable and dismissed from the NYPD.
  • For a judicial investigation into violations or neglect of duty by Mayor de Blasio, Police Commissioner O’Neill, Deputy Commissioner Kevin Richardson (in charge of discipline) and others related to the case.
  • For full access to ALL NYPD and CCRB records of the case.

About NYPD Killing of Eric Garner

On July 17, 2014,  Eric Garner was killed on a Staten Island sidewalk after being placed in an NYPD-banned chokehold by Officer Daniel Pantaleo, during a false/illegal arrest while Eric pleaded “I can’t breathe” eleven times. The killing was captured on video, which showed a number of officers who used force in the illegal arrest, failed to intervene and failed to provide aid.  NYPD officials and officers also attempted to cover-up the killing, first claiming that Garner died of a heart attack, illegally leaked sealed records to criminalize Garner, and lying on official reports. 

NYPD officer Daniel Pantaleo and other officers responsible for misconduct should have been fired years ago.  Instead, Pantaleo has been taking home a six-figure salary with overtime almost every year since killing Garner in 2014 and has had his base pay increased at least twice -- and the other officers who engaged in misconduct have also remained on the force.  This is unacceptable.  We stand with Eric Garner's family to demand Mayor de Blasio and NYPD #FirePantaleo and other officers for killing #EricGarner and related misconduct. 

News on Eric Garner

Win: Ruling Paves the Way for Blaz, Top NYPD Brass to Take Stand in Killing of Eric Garner

New York Supreme Court denies the majority of City’s motion to dismiss in Carr v de Blasio

New York, NY (September 24, 2020) – In a major win for transparency and basic civil rights, NY Supreme Court Justice Joan A. Madden ruled today that a public judicial inquiry into potential violations and neglect of duty by New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, former NYPD Commissioner James O’Neill, and other top police officials arising from the death of Eric Garner can proceed.

Statement by Gwen Carr, Mother of Eric Garner, After Oral Arguments Cut Short & Recessed in Carr v. de Blasio

New York, NY - Gwen Carr, the mother of Eric Garner, reacted to the unexpected shortening and recess of today's Carr v. de Blasio oral arguments after a City Law Department attorney experienced a power outage impacting his video of court proceedings. The hearing presided over by New York State Supreme Court Judge Joan A. Madden, will resume tomorrow, Wednesday, August 5, at 11:30 AM.

Outraged by Rampant Police Brutality, Elected Officials, Families of New Yorkers Killed by NYPD and Racial Justice Leaders Demand Major Cuts to the NYPD to Reduce Violence and Fund Equitable Recovery from COVID-19

New York, NY (June 3, 2020) – Today, Communities United for Police Reform (CPR), the mothers of Ramarley Graham and Mohammad Bah, sister of Delrawn Small and elected officials emphasized why NYPD’s recent, frequent and detestable violence toward NYC communities underscores the urgent need for major cuts to the NYPD. The speakers shared how substantial cuts to NYPD’s bloated $6 billion budget are an essential measure to reduce police brutality and violence. Redirected, these funds can promote a strong and equitable recovery from COVID-19.

Gwen Carr, Mother of Eric Garner, Condemns Minneapolis Police Killing of George Floyd, Who Said “I Can’t Breathe” Before Dying

New York – Today, Gwen Carr, the mother of Eric Garner, condemned the Minneapolis police killing of George Floyd, who was heard on video saying “I can’t breathe” before dying – the same words Garner used when he was killed by NYPD officers in 2014.




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