"eric garner death"Arguments are being made as to whether or not secret documents and records from the grand jury proceedings surrounding the case of a man killed by the police, should be revealed.

A New York judge is listening to the arguments surrounding the case of the death of Eric Garner which has caused widespread controversy across the country and raised many political questions and debates.

In the original hearing, the panel did not bring charges against police officer Daniel Pantaleo after he put Eric Garner into a chokehold that later led to his death.

According to a report by the BBC, the prosecutor opposes the move, saying it will hamper witness co-operation.

What has made the case more difficult is that similar records were released for a Missouri grand jury investigating the death of an unarmed black teenager.

According to the BBC, St Louis County Prosecutor Robert McCulloch released the records, with witness names redacted, after the jury declined to charge Officer Darren Wilson for the killing of Michael Brown, 18, in Ferguson.

Brown and Garner’s death sparked protests across the US about police killings and police relations with black and other minority communities.

The case relating to Eric Garner, who was 43 when he died involve him being stopped by police for selling untaxed cigarettes in Staten Island and it was during this stop that he was placed into a chokehold by Police officer Pantaleo.

A city medical officer determined the death of Garner as being homicide stemming from the results of the chokehold and the entire case is now being looked at by the US Justice department who have launched a civil rights investigation.

According to the BBC, the New York Civil Liberties Union and other groups who are suing cited the outcry over the Garner grand jury’s decision not to indict despite the video of the incident, as a compelling exception to the normal secrecy of the grand jury.

Disclosure is needed “to restore public confidence in our criminal justice system and to inform the current debate that has begun regarding the role of the grand jury as an instrument of justice or injustice” NYCLU argues in court documents.

The entire case has raised important issues in the US regarding race relations in the country as a whole and the treatment especially of black males by police.


An avid reader, I consistently engage myself in the areas of current affairs and understanding of international relations, whilst at the same time, am interested in the area of economics and understanding the roles of economic concerns in the political economy. You can follow The Heralding on Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest & Google+. Alternatively subscribe to our newsletter to be kept up to date with the latest articles on the Heralding.

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