Protests in New York City after cop is not charged for choking black man to death

After a grand jury declined to charge a white police officer in the death of a black man who was choked, demonstrators have hit the streets in several areas of New York City (NYC).

Police officer Daniel Pantaleo had choked Eric Garner, 43, while arresting him on suspicion of selling untaxed cigarettes on Staten Island, a NYC borough.

Soon after the decision by the grand jury, hundreds of protesters converged on the Rockefeller Center and in New York City's Times Square chanting "No justice, no peace."

This chant was also used by demonstrators who were angered by a jury decision last week, when a white policeman was not indicted in the fatal shooting of black teenager Michael Brown.

Following Wednesday’s jury decision, Attorney General Eric Holder said the US Justice Department will launch a federal civil rights investigation into the case of Garner.

'Respect human lives'

Holder’s announcement – which means Pantaleo could still face trial – failed to deter protesters in Times Square who waved signs with messages such as “Black lives matter,” and “Respect human lives.”

Police were out in force and several people were arrested as they had a sit-in near the famed Rockefeller Center, an AFP reporter said.

There was another protest at Grand Central Terminal, where about 50 protesters lay pretending to be dead, and on Staten Island.

Small demonstrations also broke out in Harlem, Union Square and Columbus Circle, while there were similarly small but peaceful protests in Washington, DC.​

Source: AFP