Monday marks the beginning of a judicial inquiry into the killing of Eric Garner. Over seven years after his killing, police and city officials may finally be held accountable for Garner’s death. Advocates, including Garner’s mother, Gwen Carr, have been undeterred in demand for accountability in the years since Garner was taken away from his family and community.
As reported by the Gothamist, the inquiry is a rare legal maneuver. The Gothamist also noted that lawyers for the de Blasio administration argued the mayor and police commissioner do not have a duty to discipline; it’s “discretionary.”
Several officers are expected to testify during the proceedings. Community organizers are encouraging people to tune in and show support during the inquiry and virtually “packing the court.” Communities United for Police Reform will be providing highlights and summaries across its social media platforms.
“This is an historic moment,” New York state Rep. Julia Salazar tweeted. “For the first time in over 100 years, a judicial inquiry is scheduled to move forward in New York City courts. The Carr v. de Blasio proceedings will be remote but accessible to the public. As ever, I’m amazed by the courage of Eric Garner’s family.”
The inquiry is expected to last up to three weeks. According to Communities United for Police Reform, Justice Joan A. Madden permitted a judicial inquiry to proceed after the city requested a prior lawsuit be dismissed.
The inquiry has five specific areas of consideration as they relate to suspected violations or neglect of duty related to:
– the stop, arrest, and use of force against Mr. Garner;
– the filing of false official documents concerning Mr. Garner’s arrest;
– the leaking of Mr. Garner’s alleged arrest history and medical condition in the autopsy report;
– the alleged lack of medical care provided to Mr. Garner by police officers.
– the judicial inquiry will also examine violations and neglect of duties related to the discipline, or lack thereof, for the officers, in relation to the categories above.
Garner’s family and supporters have endured over the past seven years, as the NYPD has shown no remorse in many instances opting for displays representative of the blue line.
As previously reported by NewsOne, Pantaleo’s appeal of his termination was rejected earlier this year by a New York appeals court. Killed over seven years ago after undercover NYPD officers approached him for allegedly selling untaxed loose cigarettes, the judicial inquiry in many respects represents the last chance at justice for Garner.