As if police brutality across the country wasn’t already at a fever pitch, the number of chokehold complaints the New York Police Department (NYPD) have received so far this year is the highest it’s been in a decade, according to Time.
The Civilian Complaint Review Board (CCRB), a group tasked with investigating complaints against the NYPD, discovered that the number of chokehold complaints levied against the police department have increased from 200 a year from 2006-2010 to 219 from July 2013 to June 2014. The CCRB released the following statement on the matter:
“These findings demonstrate that, at least from the point of view of the particular experience of the complainants, police officers continue to use choke holds and the persistence of this practice puts civilians at physical risk.”
NYPD policy states that a chokehold constitutes “any pressure to the throat or windpipe, which may prevent or hinder breathing or reduce intake of air.”
And since chokeholds are loosely defined within the ranks of the NYPD, the CCRB believe that many chokeholds have likely gone underreported and misclassified as a result; consequently, groups like the CCRB want to make sure the number decreases.
These numbers are coming on the heels of Staten Island resident Eric Garner’s (pictured in white T-shirt) death, after an NYPD chokehold in July for selling untaxed cigarettes. A grand jury will be convened to decide whether police are responsible for his death.