DON’T HOLD YOUR BREATH WAITING FOR RANDOM JUSTICE IN A SYSTEM OF INJUSTICE, “the by-product of authority and its enforcement through legal fictions.”
From [HERE] and [HERE] More than Four years after Eric Garner was fatally smothered and choked to death by a gang of white cops on a street corner in Staten Island in front of numerous witnesses and cameras in broad daylight, the NYPD says it now plans to move forward with internal disciplinary proceedings against one of the officers involved.
The NYPD officer facing departmental charges in the 2014 death of Eric Garner had a preliminary hearing at police headquarters Thursday.
The judge rejected demands from Daniel Pantaleo's lawyer to delay the officer's department trial in the death of Eric Garner until July, when time runs out for federal prosecutors to file civil rights charges against him.
The white cop and his attorney have said previously they believe Trump’s Justice Department will not file any criminal charges. Stuart London, the attorney representing Pantaleo on behalf of the Patrolmen's Benevolent Association, said "I discussed the election results with him and he is cautiously optimistic. I am cautiously optimistic that, under the new administration, that the recommendations of the Eastern District that there is no civil rights case would be accepted by Justice, and that Pantaleo can then move forward with his life," London said.
The NYPD internal administrative trial will start May 13 and could take about two weeks, the judge said.
Pantaleo is expected to be prosecuted by the Administrative Prosecution Unit of the Civilian Complaint Review Board, which will ultimately make a recommendation to Police Commissioner James O'Neill. The internal NYPD hearing is not a criminal trial, and thus could not result in criminal charges being brought against Pantaleo. If found liable, the 33-year-old Pantaleo could face penalties ranging from the loss of vacation days to firing from the department. That is, at worst, he could end up losing his job—though even then, it's unlikely that the public would be made aware of the arguments and evidence presented during the hearing, according to Jeffrey Fagan, a law professor at Columbia University who specializes in police accountability and criminal law. [MORE]
Meanwhile, according to police reform experts and advocates, the city's announcement that it is moving forward with a trial amounts to little more than political theater, and does nothing to clear up the question of why the city continues to employ Officer Daniel Pantaleo and the other officers involved in the incident.
Daniel Pantaleo, who was seen on video administering an illegal chokehold on Garner, remains employed by the NYPD. An all white grand jury put together by white prosecutors, declined to indict him in 2014. Two years later, the Civilian Complaint Review Board determined he should face department charges for the use of the chokehold—though no further action was taken. He's been on desk duty since Garner's death, and reportedly received a $20,000 raise in 2016, bringing his annual salary to $119,996.
Pantaleo also has a lengthy history of misconduct, and had seven pending complaints against him at the time of the fatal arrest, according to documents leaked by a city employee.
"There is no reason that the NYPD could not have moved sooner to hold the officers involved in the killing of Eric Garner accountable," said Johanna Miller, advocacy director at NYCLU. "Not doing so, for years now, has given the appearance of complete impunity at the NYPD, which, given its size and influence, has a ripple effect to police departments across the country. The public deserves to see swift, transparent, and definitive investigations and actions by the police department when officers kill civilians."