Yesterday a Staten Island grand jury decided “NOT” to indict police office Daniel Pantaeleo in the choke hold death of Eric Garner. What is shocking to most, is that we all saw the same video and witnessed Garner dying on a sidewalk right before our very eyes.
This New York grand jury’s decision comes just 2 weeks off the heels of another grand jury’s decision not to indict officer Darren Wilson in the killing of Mike Brown in Ferguson, MO. This sends a clear message to people of color everywhere that police officers are not indicted for taking the lives of black men and young black boys in this country.
Protestors quickly took to the streets of New York blocking traffic in Times Square, Union Square, Battery Park, Henry Hudson Parkway, while lying down in Grand Central Station just in time for rush hour commuters.
The scenarios are all to familiar and somewhat the same however, let’s take a look at the high profile police shootings in this country to date. These are just some injustices, as I’m sure there are many we are not aware of:
- John Crawford in Beavercreek, Ohio killed in a Walmart because he was holding a fake gun.
- Tamir Rice a 12 year old who was fatally shot by a rookie police officer Tim Loehman playing with a fake gun in a park.
- Sean Bell shot and killed on November 26, 2006 leaving his bachelor party at a Queens bar in New York.
- Amadou Diallo shot and killed in a hail of 19 of 41 bullets outside his Bronx apartment on February 4, 1999.
- Trayvon Martin, 17 year old, shot, killed and pursued by a Florida neighborhood watchman on February 26, 2012 because he was judged as a “young thug” because he was wearing a hoodie.
- Oscar Grant III, shot and killed by a BART police officer in Oakland, CA on New Years Eve 2009.
- Michael Brown shot and killed August 9, 2014 in Ferguson, MO by police officer Darren Wilson.
- Eric Garner, the 43 year old, Staten Island father of 6, died in an illegal choke-hold.
This list is sad but alarming, for we will never have peace when justice is DENIED.