New York reaches $5.9m settlement in chokehold death
The city of New York announced Monday it had reached a $5.9 million settlement with the family of a black man who died after being placed in a police chokehold, unleashing a year of nationwide protests.
Eric Garner, 43, a father of six who was suspected of illegally selling cigarettes, was wrestled to the ground by white police officers after resisting arrest on July 17, 2014 in Staten Island.
The city`s comptroller, Scott Stringer, announced the $5.9 million settlement. The family had filed the first step in a damages claim seeking $75 million last October.
"Following a judicious review of the claim and facts of his case, my office was able to reach a settlement with the estate of Eric Garner that is in the best interests of all parties," he announced.
"We are all familiar with the events that lead to the death of Eric Garner and the extraordinary impact his passing has had on our city and our nation," he added.
The family had filed a notice of claim, blaming his death on "negligence, recklessness and carelessness," naming eight officers, the city of New York and the New York police department.
Chokeholds are outlawed by New York police.
Garner`s death was classified as a homicide by the New York medical examiner`s office, but a grand jury decided not to prosecute the officer who used the fatal chokehold.
The chokehold was captured live on an amateur video.
Garner, who was obese and asthmatic and repeatedly complained he could not breathe, lost consciousness and was pronounced dead after being transferred to hospital.
His death sparked outrage and set off numerous protests in New York reminiscent of those in Ferguson, Missouri, over the August 9 police shooting of unarmed black teenager Michael Brown.