Another Non-Indictment

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criminal justice

I can’t say I’m surprised the Long Island Jury failed to bring an indictment in the death of Eric Garner, but I was hoping otherwise. Given that the chokehold was captured on video, nobody can claim the eyewitness testimony was ambiguous. The death was ruled a homicide by the medical examiner, the cause of death was choking, and we had a video of how it was done, and yet the grand jury couldn’t indict?

There’s no excuse for this. But I can’t say I’m surprised.

See Charles Blow, “The Perfect Victim Pitfall.”

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16 Comments

16 Comments

  1. Dukkha Earl  •  Dec 4, 2014 @12:42 am

    The Rethuglicans can’t agree on the cause of Eric Garner’s death. Per New York Representative Peter King, it was the result of Garner’s obesity. However, Kentucky Senator (Ayn) Rand Paul is convinced that the real culprit was cigarette taxes. (This is NOT snark!)

  2. paradoctor  •  Dec 4, 2014 @2:47 am

    It’s now _officially_ open season on black men in America, if the killer wears a blue shirt and a badge. I know that it’s structurally almost impossible to indict a cop, but I had the naive hope that the men in charge would keep at least the _illusion_ of justice intact. I thought they knew that overt police thuggery is bad for the State’s brand.

    For of course open season won’t stop with black men.

  3. c u n d gulag  •  Dec 4, 2014 @9:43 am

    When it comes to killing black people, our police appear to have been given “Cop Blanche.”

  4. PurpleGirl  •  Dec 4, 2014 @10:15 am

    Every cop in the US could have a body cam, but if a grand jury won’t indict a cop for murder what good will the cam video be?

  5. joanr16  •  Dec 4, 2014 @11:43 am

    America’s cops have military hardware now, and an exemption from culpability for killing citizens (at least those of color). Of course people are furious, Faux Noise & Friends. Duh.

  6. uncledad  •  Dec 4, 2014 @11:54 am

    Grand Jury’s don’t indict killer cops (or civilians that kill large scary Negros) because the local prosecutors are not putting on a case for indictment they are putting on a defense case for the killer? Instead of pointing out that Gardner died because he was fat, or the real problem is the cigarette taxes our genius congress critters need to start working on legislation that takes the investigation and prosecution of these cases away from the very people that have the most to lose and or gain!

  7. Ed  •  Dec 4, 2014 @5:41 pm

    And the police union in NYC feels it is being thrown under the bus by the mayor!

  8. uncledad  •  Dec 4, 2014 @5:49 pm

    twit-filtered again?

  9. Tom_b  •  Dec 4, 2014 @7:00 pm

    I’ve long argued cops should not be armed. Obviously, some are too deadly to be on the force even bare-handed. Wouldn’t it be nice if the police served the people instead of the killing them?

  10. Bonnie  •  Dec 4, 2014 @9:08 pm

    No one deserves the death penalty for selling single cigarettes or for stealing a couple of cigarillos or for being obese or for jaywalking. The policemen are now playing judge, jury, and executioner; and not being held accountable for this.

  11. Doug  •  Dec 4, 2014 @10:43 pm

    Would like to see a CGI parody where Sheriff Tate gives Barny Fife a 357 Glock and a full load of ammo with instructions not to use it against a white person.

  12. sluggo  •  Dec 5, 2014 @12:48 pm

    @ Tom B

    Amen. Could you imagine the uproar from the right if the Andy Griffith Show was on TV now? Imagine that? A cop not carrying a gun?

  13. grannyeagle  •  Dec 5, 2014 @12:57 pm

    Been doing a lot of thinking and remembering. I worked as a psyche nurse for many years. There were times when it became necessary to control a violent and threatening patient that we put them in restraints. We were able to do this without guns, billy clubs, chokeholds, etc. As a matter of fact, we were prohibited from any move that would cause harm. Also, we didn’t always have a male on staff. Time and again, we were able to do this, get the patient in 4-point restraints without any harm. It’s a matter of training, a plan and working together. We were allowed to call for help from security or even police. However, when the police came, they very often wanted to “take charge” and to be more forceful than was necessary. So, I know if we were able to do this, it can be done. I realize if the victim has a gun, it is a different story but the cases lately have involved unarmed men.
    Also, I have heard some comments like: If the victim had just obeyed the officers and not resisted, they would be alive today. To me, this is like saying to a rape victim, if you had just consented, you wouldn’t have been raped. Just lie back and enjoy it. Is this the kind of relationship we want or should have with police, that we just have to submit no matter what? That we cannot have a conversation with them when questioned? It does not make me feel comfortable. I want to feel protected by law enforcement not harassed.
    One more thing, I’m all for having laws but there are different levels of crime. Theft is not good but reinforcing that law by killing someone is just not justifiable.

  14. uncledad  •  Dec 5, 2014 @1:09 pm

    “357 Glock and a full load of ammo with instructions not to use it against a white person”

    I’ll do you one better, lets dispense with the parity, how bout we get a rich liberal to donate 1-2 million dollars to purchase AR-15’s then distribute those AR-15’s to inner city Black Men between the ages of 18-30 who can pass a background check. I wonder how the gun-humpers over at FAUX and the NRA will react? They seemed OK with the rednecks at Cliven Bundy’s government paid ranch aiming weapons at the police!

  15. Ed  •  Dec 5, 2014 @2:39 pm

    True, uncledad. If there had been a video of a white tax resister being choked to death, Fox News and the Tea Party would be on the warpath.

  16. Swami  •  Dec 6, 2014 @3:52 pm


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