*(Via Huffington Post) – New York City residents took to the streets on Wednesday after a grand jury said it would not bring charges in the death of Eric Garner, a Staten Island man who died in July after a police officer placed him in a chokehold.
Garner, 43, was being arrested for selling loose, untaxed cigarettes on July 17 when New York City Police Officer Daniel Pantaleo placed him in an illegal chokehold. The medical examiner ruled Garner’s death a homicide, but the grand jury said Wednesday it would not indict Pantaleo.
Demonstrators gathered across the city, from the Staten Island neighborhood where Garner died to high-traffic areas in midtown Manhattan. They assembled in Times Square, Union Square, Lincoln Center and Grand Central Station. They marched down Broadway and blocked traffic on the West Side Highway. Police used barricades to keep the crowd from disrupting the Christmas tree lighting ceremony at Rockefeller Center. More than two dozen demonstrators were reportedly arrested, though the protests remained largely non-violent.
Late in the afternoon, a group of people gathered at Grand Central Station in Manhattan to stage a “die-in.” Protesters stretched out on the station’s floor to represent victims of police brutality. Police, who have been preparing for the protests for days, stood by.
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