Black Man Killed in a Chokehold by NYPD Officer
By Herb Boyd
NEW YORK – Rev. Al Sharpton was in the middle of his speech recounting how Eric Garner, 43, had been killed in a chokehold by NYPD officer when Garner’s wife collapsed by his side on the stage of the National Action Network in Harlem.
“They will try to scandalize the decease,” Sharpton said of the NYPD and what he anticipated they would say. “The issue is not about an unarmed man selling cigarettes…It’s about a man who was subjected to a chokehold and is no longer with us.”
At that point, Esaw Garner collapsed and had to be held up by Sharpton and Rev. Herbert Daughtry, another prominent activist. After she was led from the stage and to a backroom, Sharpton continued his speech. “You can never predict how someone will react to grief,” he said.
All of Garner’s relatives were in pain and weeping as they left the stage, including his mother, Gwen Carr, his sister Ellisha Flagg, and his daughter, Emerald Garner.
Sharpton promised the family that the National Action Network would pay for the funeral of a man the family knew as “Big E” or more affectionately the “Bear” by his wife.
None of these appellations were effective in stopping the officers who sought to detain him in front of a hardware store in Staten Island. It didn’t matter to the officers who surrounded him that he was the father of six children and was known as the “Gentle Giant.” Or, the fact that he repeatedly told them: “I can’t breathe.”
Once Garner, who was asthmatic, was no longer moving the cops took a step back and one of them stooped over Garner as if to see if he was still alive. He wasn’t.
The entire video can be seen on YouTube courtesy of liveleak.