New York, NY – After over 5 years of investigation, Daniel Pantaleo, a New York City police officer, has finally been fired for using an illegal chokehold that led to the death of Eric Garner, an unarmed Black man accused of selling untaxed cigarettes.
Police commissioner James O’Neill announced on Monday that he has fired Pantaleo based on a recent recommendation from a department disciplinary judge. Pantaleo had been on desk duty with pay since Garner’s death, but has now been terminated from his position following the administrative trial which ended in June. Pantaleo will also no longer qualify to receive pension.
Many officers were on the scene but Pantaleo was the officer who was caught on video putting Garner in a headlock while he wrestled him to the ground in a violent arrest in 2014. Garner died shortly after arriving at the hospital.
During the arrest, Garner pleaded repeatedly, “I can’t breathe.” It became a rallying cry for national protests over race and the police excessive use of force.
Autopsy results confirmed that Garner died of heart attack and noted that the chokehold was a factor on his death. A medical examiner also ruled Garner’s death a homicide, but a grand jury declined to indict Pantaleo in 2014.
In addition, the Department of Justice announced back in July that it would not file any charges against Pantaleo.
2021 City Council Inauguration
San Antonio’s newly elected Council members are all sworn in and ready for the work ahead. Four new members joined the 10 district dais including District 2 Councilman Jalen McKee-Rodriguez who made history when he won the Jun. 5 runoff election against former councilwoman, Jada Andrews-Sullivan. Mckee-Rodriguez, 26, ran his entire campaign on progressive principals and values with the goal of transforming city hall. He is also the first openly gay black man to serve on the council and in the state of Texas. The former math teacher is looking forward to serving his constituents, focusing on the budget, and bringing accountability to District 2 and the city of San Antonio.
Fight Back Against Voter Suppression
Rally at the TX Capitol this Saturday: Fight Back Against Voter Suppression
JOIN THE TEXAS POOR PEOPLE’S CAMPAIGN AND VDC OUTREACH THIS SATURDAY AT THE CAPITOL FOR A RALLY AGAINST VOTER SUPPRESSION (MASK Required). April 24, 2021, 100 W. 11th Street, Austin, TX 78201
A record number of voter suppression bills have been filed in Texas during the legislative session. These attempts to further voter suppression reflect a coordinated, nationwide effort to stifle the power of a multi-racial fusion movement to make democracy real for the 140 million poor and low-income people living in the U.S.
The bills in the TX Legislature that pose the greatest threat to Texans are House Bill 6 (HB 6) and Senate Bill 7 (SB 7). While slightly different in content, these bills aim to limit voting by restricting how and when people can vote.
In response to HB 6 and SB 7 advancing through the Legislature, we will be having a rally at the Capitol to show lawmakers that we are paying attention and that we will not let our right to vote be stolen from us.
Special guest speakers include:
- Charles O’Neal, Chairman of the Board of Directors of the U.S. Black Chambers, Inc.
- Dr. Shirley McKellar, Council member District 3, Tyler, TX
- Dr. Jamal Randy Allen Rasheed, President / C.E.O Ellis County African American Hall of Fame Museum
- Eric Williams, Dallas filmmaker who recently released “Finding Miriam“
Collective Bargaining Negotiations Extended
City of San Antonio’s statement on collective bargaining negotiations with the San Antonio Police Officers Association
SAN ANTONIO (April 19, 2021) — Today, the City of San Antonio and the San Antonio Police Officers Association (SAPOA) agreed to extend collective bargaining negotiations. The parties agreed to a 15-day extension, which extends negotiations through May 12, 2021.
“We have made positive progress in these negotiations, but the arbitration process remains unresolved – that is our top disciplinary reform priority. We made our disciplinary priorities clear and known prior to beginning these negotiations,” said City Manager Erik Walsh. “It is not acceptable to have arbitrators undermine the Chief’s authority and force him to rehire officers that have been fired for egregious conduct. Allowing that to continue tarnishes the City, the San Antonio Police Department and our efforts to serve the public daily.”
“Our residents have voiced their priorities and asked us to seek substantial disciplinary changes for police officers. My Council colleagues and I are committed to making that the City’s top priority in these negotiations,” said Mayor Ron Nirenberg.
The City has negotiated in good faith and is willing to continue negotiations.
“It is critically important to the San Antonio community that the police contract no longer protect and enable bad officers. The vast majority of San Antonio Police Officers do a tremendous job protecting and serving the community, and they deserve better,” said Deputy City Manager María Villagómez.
The City of San Antonio’s negotiating team met with SAPOA 11 times since both parties agreed to negotiate in good faith. Both parties agreed at the start of the negotiations to meet and negotiate through at least April 19, 2021.
More information about the collective bargaining agreement negotiations, including recordings of past sessions can be found here: https://www.sanantonio.gov/City-Attorney/CollectiveBargaining