Eric Garner’s Death Led to Most Active US Protests Since the 60s

One year ago on Friday, Eric Garner, a 43-year-old New Yorker and father of six affectionately known as “Big E”, died on a Staten Island sidewalk after New York police department officers placed the 350-pound asthmatic man in a chokehold. Vigils and protests remembering Garner will continue through the weekend as family members, friends and activists push for further police accountability reforms after his death spurred one of the most active years of protest since the civil rights movement of the 1960s. Nationwide, calls for police body cameras have abounded despite the prevalence of video in cases, like Garner’s, that have gone un-prosecuted. A Staten Island grand jury declined to indict the officer that put Garner in a chokehold. The prosecutor, Republican Dan Donovan, was later elected to Congress. Since Garner’s death, the NYPD has started a federally mandated body-camera pilot program.