NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Relatives of a man who died in police custody earlier this month told Staten Island’s district attorney Monday that they want federal investigators to take over the probe into his death.
As CBS 2’s Dick Brennan reported, the family of Eric Garner met with DA Daniel Donovan Jr. on Monday and said they would like the feds to step in.
Video of Garner’s arrest appears to show him being held in a choke hold by police, who moved into arrest Garner for allegedly selling illegal cigarettes.
Mayor Bill de Blasio said Monday he has full faith in the current investigation.
“Right now, we have the Staten Island district attorney and the internal affairs bureau investigating, and I respect both of those entities and believe that they will do their investigations effectively,” the mayor said. “If the federal government decides to get involved in the case, we will absolutely cooperate.”
De Blasio spoke about the case at City Hall after returning from his vacation to Italy. He was joined by NYPD Commissioner Bill Bratton, who defended having police officers make arrests for quality-of-life crimes by hearkening back to the bad old days.
“The basic mission for police to exist is the prevention of crime, fear and disorder,” Bratton said. “I would argue in this city in particular, in this country there was no focus on prevention in the ’70s and ’80s. There was certainly no focus on disorder.”