Read Bill de Blasio's Statement On Eric Garner, Police Violence, And The Possibility Of Protests
On Wednesday afternoon, shortly after Daniel Pantaleo was cleared of all charges in the death of Eric Garner, mayor Bill de Blasio released a statement on Garner's death. In it, de Blasio describes Garner's death as an "injustice" that the city of New York is working to ensure won't be repeated, thanks to "the changing culture of law enforcement" overseen by Police Commissioner William Bratton. Quoting Martin Luther King - "Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere" — de Blasio offered his condolences to Garner's family, and promised reforms.
He also addressed the possibility of protest in Staten Island and New York Wednesday night, urging a non-violent response to the grand jury decision.
This is a deeply emotional day — for Garner's family, and for all New Yorkers. His death was a terrible tragedy that no family should have to endure. This is a subject that is never far from my family's minds — or our hearts. And Eric Garner's death put a spotlight on police-community relations and civil rights — some of most critical issues our nation faces today.
Today's outcome is one that many in our city did not want. Yet New York City owns a proud and powerful tradition of expressing ourselves through non-violent protest. We trust that those unhappy with today's grand jury decision will make their views known in the same peaceful, constructive way. We all agree that demonstrations and free speech are valuable contributions to debate, and that violence and disorder are not only wrong -- but hurt the critically important goals we are trying to achieve together.