Friday, December 5, 2014


Another day, another grand jury decision guaranteed to inflame an already infuriated citizenry.  The grand jury in New York declined to indict NYPD officer Daniel Pantaleo in the choking death of Eric Garner.

Here is a video of the incident, with commentary before and after.  The action in question starts at around 1:00.

There are many issues here.  I start with the more trivial and work my way to the deadly serious.

First off, is this the best use of police assets? focus on people selling "loosies," single cigarettes?  Why is this even against the law?  Aren't there more serious criminal matters to attend to?  And did you see how many cops were there?  You'd think they'd cornered a serial rapist-murderer.

Do these cops know the community they are policing?
If not, why not?  If so, then they know this is a nonviolent man.  So why did they take him down so violently?  There are techniques to get nonviolent suspects to comply, and the best ones don't resemble WWF spectacles.

Do they still teach Verbal Judo techniques to police officers?
I ask that because so many seem so quick to go for the shoot or the take down.  Mr. Garner was textbook non-compliant.  That immediately put him in danger of being on the bad end of escalating compliance techniques.  Still, why the inept attempt at an MMA-style rear naked choke (that turned into a forearm across Garner's windpipe)?  Is this all trained law enforcement professionals have in their toolbox? 

What happened after the takedown is just as egregious
Do police know CPR?  Can they identify if someone is in immediate medical distress?  After the struggle, Mr. Garner was down, clearly not moving and apparently not breathing and the cops just stood there dumb, poking at him every now and then or gently nudging him as if to try to wake him up.  Start watching the video at around the 3:00 mark, and keep watching.  If you are not angry and saddened by the 4:45 or even the 5:00 mark, you have no human compassion in your soul.

Mr. Garner was not a gun-wielding maniac.  He was not on PCP and slinging people through plate glass windows.  He was giving the cops some attitude and flinching away when they tried to cuff him.  Non-compliant?  Yes.  But he attacked no one, and had no recent history of violence.

This is the best New York's "finest" can do?

I am not anti-cop, but I must wonder where are police departments getting these people, and what kind of training are they providing them?

We could contract out policing to street gangs and get the same result.

* - Here is a different compilation, with the aftermath first:
Eric Garner Choke hold Death

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