NEW YORK (STL.News) – New York Attorney General Letitia James released the following statement in response to the NYPD’s recommendation to terminate the employment of Officer Daniel Pantaleo over actions that resulted in the death of Eric Garner:
“For over five years, the Garner family, New Yorkers, and Americans across the country have waited for justice to be served in the death of Eric Garner. Today’s recommendation reflects action that should have been taken long ago: Officer Pantaleo should be removed from his position at the NYPD. I strongly urge Mayor de Blasio and Commissioner O’Neill to follow through on this recommendation and take this overdue, but critical action to ensure our communities finally feel some semblance of justice.”
In the wake of the death of Eric Garner, then-Public Advocate Letitia James led the charge for reforms to police accountability and criminal justice. She was the first elected official to call for the entire NYPD to be outfitted with police body-worn cameras. Following her repeated actions and a report issued by her office, the NYPD implemented a full force body-worn camera program. Additionally, she was the first elected official to call for the creation of a special prosecutor to be used in cases of police misconduct, which resulted in the Attorney General of New York being appointed to this role. She also filed a lawsuit to release the minutes of the Grand Jury proceeding to ensure full transparency.