The city of New York has entered into a settlement agreement with the family of Eric Garner, a man who died after an officer put him into a chokehold in July 2014. The settlement agreement was reached on Monday, city officials announced.
The man's death last year, along with the shooting death of an 18-year-old black man in Ferguson, Missouri, inspired anti-police violence protests throughout the United States, as citizens gathered to show their support for the civil rights of their African American countrymen.
New York Mayor Bill de Blasio made several statements regarding the settlement. He said, "No sum of money can make this family whole, but hopefully the Garner family can find some peace and finality from today's settlement." He further said, "By reaching a resolution, family and other loved ones can move forward even though we know they will never forget this tragic incident."
Scott Stringer, New York City's comptroller, said that he believed the settlement acknowledges the tragedy of the man's death. He also mentioned that the city has not admitted liability regarding the incident.
Family Initially Requested $75 Million in Compensation
The deceased man's family initiated their wrongful death claims last October, asking for $75 million in compensatory damages. The family, along with Reverend Al Sharpton, who served as their attorney, will hold a press conference on Tuesday to discuss the settlement.
Another attorney representing the family, indicated that although the settlement will resolve the litigation against New York City, there were other claims regarding the young man's death. For example, the family also reached a yet-to-be disclosed settlement with the medical facility that dispatched emergency responders to the scene. Allegedly, the family claimed that emergency medical technicians failed to administer aid to the man.
The family's attorney indicated that they are trying to move forward with a federal prosecution against the individual officers responsible for the man's death. A grand jury chose not to press charges against the New York City officer who put the man in a chokehold, even though the move has been banned by the police department.
Medical Examiner Ruled Death to Be a Homicide
Allegedly, the 43-year-old victim had been selling cigarettes illegally on a city sidewalk when he was approached by officers and got into an argument with them. Officers then proceeded to tackle the man and strangled him to death. New York's medical examiner ruled the death to be a homicide.
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