After a New York Police Department hearing, an administrative judge recommended, on Friday, Aug. 2, that New York police officer Daniel Pantaleo should be dismissed from his job for using an illegal chokehold that resulted in the death of Eric Garner in July 2014.
The judge’s recommendation will now be taken into consideration by the New York Police Department Commissioner James O’Neill to determine Pantaleo’s future with the force. A decision from the NYPD is expected within two weeks.
Pantaleo, age 33, was suspended from duty on Friday. He was found guilty of using a chokehold on Garner, but was not found guilty on a charge of aggravated assault.
Video footage of Eric Garner’s violent arrest, taken by nearby residents using their cellphones, showed a group of four police officers subduing Garner on a city sidewalk. Garner was heard telling the officers, “I can’t breathe,” as he gasped for air.
Garner had been accused of selling cigarettes to New York residents on Staten Island.
A grand jury on Staten Island ruled Eric Garner’s death to be a homicide, resulting from fatal complications from trauma, in December 2014.
A police department internal investigation, one month later, determined that Pantaleo used a chokehold to take down Garner during the arrest, a maneuver that is banned by the NYPD.
U.S. Attorney General William Barr reviewed the case against Pantaleo, but declined to bring federal charges against the police officer for civil rights violations. U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of New York Richard Donoghue stated in a press conference, on July 16, “An officer’s mistake, fear, misperception, or even poor judgment does not constitute willful conduct under federal criminal civil rights law.”