NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) — The Rev. Al Sharpton gave a passionate speech Wednesday evening, as friends, family members, and community leaders came together to remember Eric Garner, the Staten Island man who who died while in police custody after a struggle.
To thunderous cheers at the Bethel Baptist Church in Boerum Hill, Brooklyn, Sharpton argued that the officers involved in Garner’s arrest last Thursday – one of whom appeared on video putting him in a choke hold – need to face more serious consequences than those that have been promised so far.
“The choke hold is illegal. But even if you lost your training memory, a man in your arm saying, ‘I can’t breathe’ – when does your decency kick in? When does your morality kick in?” Sharpton said. “Let’s not play games with this. You don’t need no training to stop choking a man saying, ‘I can’t breathe.’ You don’t need no cultural orientation to stop choking a man saying, ‘I can’t breathe.’ You need to be prosecuted.”