Eric Garner's Widow: 'Are You Serious?'

NYPD cop says he meant no harm in statement after grand jury decision
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 3, 2014 4:00 PM CST

The widow of the man who died during an arrest by the NYPD can't believe that an officer seen using a chokehold on Eric Garner was not indicted today. “Oh my God, are you serious?” Esaw Garner tells the Daily News. “I’m very disappointed. You can see in the video that (the cop) was dead wrong.” She adds that she hopes the officer, Daniel Pantaleo, will face federal charges. Pantaleo, meanwhile, issued a statement saying that he didn't intend to hurt the 43-year-old Garner, reports AP.

"I became a police officer to help people and to protect those who can't protect themselves," he said in the statement. "It is never my intention to harm anyone and I feel very bad about the death of Mr. Garner. My family and I include him and his family in our prayers, and I hope that they will accept my personal condolences for their loss." The NYPD is bracing for protests, and today's grand jury announcement coincides with this evening's annual lighting of a Christmas tree in Rockefeller Center, reports CBS Local. After the grand jury's decision, Mayor DeBlasio announced that he would not attend the ceremony. (More Daniel Pantaleo stories.)

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