Daughter Of Eric Garner Stages Moving “Die-In” In The Same Spot Where Her Father Was Killed
The nation is still reeling from the grand jury decision not to indict Officer Daniel Pantaleo for his role in the death of Eric Garner. The 43-year-old father of six was confronted by police for allegedly selling loose cigarettes, and then choked to death by Officer Pantaleo on-camera as they tried to arrest him. And while many were disgusted and hurt by the lack of justice in this particular case, no one was more devastated by the outcome than Garner’s family, including his children.
So in an effort to make her voice heard, Garner’s daughter, Erica, organized both a rally and a die-in on Thursday in front of the same spot where her father died. The 24-year-old recounted the day that Eric died and the lack of respect and humanity she felt that both her father and her family were shown. That lack of respect is still being shown, as Officer Pantaleo is now claiming that he never put Garner in a chokehold, despite what the video of that failed arrest clearly shows:
“This is the spot it happened, where cops lied to my family that night and said he died of a heart attack…This is the spot officers tackled my father like an animal and treated his life with no respect. None! They threw him on that gurney with no type of humanity. This is the spot my father screamed out 11 times he couldn’t breathe. Nobody helped him. Nobody tried to help him.”
At one point, Erica actually laid down in same exact spot where her father took his last breath. From that spot, she led chants of “I Can’t Breathe” with a megahorn.
Erica was joined by a group of protesters who laid down on cardboards on the street and shouted for change. And while the Garner family has received a great deal of support from around the country, one place Erica says that she hasn’t felt the same support has come from is from Staten Island, where her family lives and where her father died. When asked why, she said “I have no idea.”
“I don’t understand it. A man died here on your streets. But all the other support I’ve gotten has brought me to tears. I want people to keep fighting with me. I’m here to represent my father. This has to stop.”