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Report: No indictment in NYC chokehold death

Posted at 3:27 PM, Dec 03, 2014
and last updated 2014-12-03 16:03:15-05

New York City Police Officer Daniel Pantaleo will not be indicted in the July 17 choking death of Eric Garner, according to The Associated Press.

"I am actually astonished based on the evidence of the video tape, and the medical examiner, that this grand jury at this time wouldn't indict for anything, is really just astonishing," Garner family attorney Jonathan Moore told AP.

Garner, an unarmed black man, died after police stopped him on suspicion of selling untaxed cigarettes. Pantaleo wrapped his arm around Garner's neck and Garner, 43, later died at a hospital. 

Pantaleo's attorney and police union officials argued Pantaleo used a takedown maneuver as opposed to a chokehold, which is banned by the police department, according to AP. The move was done after Garner, a heavyset man, resisted arrest, Pantaleo's side said. 

The grand jury decision comes less than two weeks after a Ferguson, Missouri grand jury declined to indict police officer Darren Wilson for the shooting death of Michael Brown, a black 18-year old. Brown also was unarmed when he was shot. 

ABC News reported New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio canceled his events to go to Staten Island to meet with officials.

Pantaleo released a statement, according to ABC News.  

"I became a police officer to help people and to protect those who can't protect themselves," the statement read. "It is never my intention to harm anyone and I feel very bad about the death of Mr. Garner."