It has been reported that the Federal Grand Jury has begun hearing evidence in the case of Eric Garner. Garner died in the arms of a police chokehold in 2014, the incident caught national attention when a bystander captured it on video and Garner could be heard repeatedly saying, “I can’t breathe.” Last summer, NYC settled with the Garner family for $5.9 million, however the family said they wanted Pantaleo to face federal charges.
During the hearing the grand jury is to determine whether Officer Daniel Pantaleo violated Garner’s civil rights while arresting him for allegedly selling loose cigarettes. According to The New York Daily News, the Justice Department has called upon civil rights division prosecutor, Forrest Christian.
NY Daily News additionally reports;
“The convening of the grand jury is a monumental step in the federal investigation that was launched in December 2014 immediately after a state grand jury declined to prosecute Pantaleo. It is unclear whether Pantaleo will testify before the federal grand jury, but federal prosecutors can use his testimony before the state grand jury.