Why wasn't the police officer who killed Eric Garner indicted?

No, it means he had a lot of police contact. Sure he may have made some bad choices in life but it is just as likely that a police force that was told to target young black males and had a history of stopping and searching them with no cause chose to stop him often.

Most people are breaking minor laws all of the time and it would be trivial to find something to ticket them with. The fact that you can only count a high amount of arrests but cannot provide an extensive conviction record points to that type of police abuse.

This type of abuse is well known from the NYPD, in fact the current mayor made a point of saying he was going to reduce this amount of police harassment as one of his primary election promises.

Here is the actual campaign ad.


You…suspect. I suppose, then, that this means you are under no obligation to support it? Since, after all, it is nothing more than a suspicion.

Your explanation did not adequately cover why it is appropriate to condemn every single black person in America for this.

You implied the protesters weren’t “advocating for systemic changes to try and fix ways in which the justice system as a whole”, and many in fact are. This isn’t mob rule, even if some call for trials for certain individuals.

It makes absolutely no sense. You’re condemning millions of people for the actions of others.

So all black people have a responsibility to “own” bad behavior by other black people? How in the fuck does this make any sense? You’re literally condemning people for their skin color! Because of their skin color, you’re saying that they have some sort of responsibility for actions they have no involvement in. That’s nonsense.

How has the community “allow[ed]” itself to be portrayed in a stupid way? Is this brilliant media so full of truth that if they portray some black people in a poor light, that somehow reflects on the black community as a whole? Was this always true? If newspapers in 1880s Birmingham blamed the poor qualities of black people for some unfortunate event, does that mean that the 1880s Birmingham black community deserves communal condemnation?

This doesn’t help your argument – mass condemnation for the actions of a few is always stupid.

No its not. These protesters aren’t advocating that any groups rights should be restricted.

It’s not “dominated by calls for specific prosecutions”, unless you’re just watching Fox News. It’s dominated by calls to reform policing and the justice system in general.

No to what? That some police officers and departments might be treating black people differently because of their race, or that if they are than the protesters might be correct?

That opinion doesn’t seem to be supported by the ME, but that aside, what the police did was wrong on multiple levels, the choke hold is just one aspect, and particularly egregious, since the police force itself recognizes the danger of the technique.

Of course not. However, nothing he did excuses the excessive force or negligence the police displayed. The police have an obligation to protect and serve all citizens, even the uncooperative petty criminals. Non-compliance doesn’t make a citizen fair game for any amount of force the police deem necessary.

WADR to Dr. Koblinsky, ISTM that he is mistaken. I have been choked out numerous times without petechiae. He attributes the petechiae to the blood choke - I suspect that it came from the positional asphyxia and chest compression.

If there is a case on record of a normal person being killed by a blood choke, I am not aware of it. Chest compression, yes, but not a blood choke. As mentioned, blood chokes have been applied in sport judo for seventy years without a single fatality.

Apart from the blood choke, it does not appear to me that anything else the police did was wrong, in the sense of being illegal or against department policy. Pinning a suspect down to handcuff him is neither illegal, against policy, nor (IMO) wrong. And the police cannot be expected to know that a suspect who is morbidly obese, also has diabetes, severe asthma, sleep apnea, and heart disease, and therefore is going to die if he is subdued after resisting arrest.


Dude, I’d hang out at a friendlier bar!

That is a very specific aspect of the problem of bias - not bias in police choosing to arrest or hassle specific “disfavoured” minorities, but the (allied) probem that when there is a confrontation between a member of the public and the police (and in particular where that member of the public is from one of the “disfavored” minorities) the usually-tight relationships between police and prosecutors results in the pereception of less than full-blooded investigation and evidence gathering (by the police) and prosecution (by prosecutors).

This is a game that the police and prosecutors cannot win - if they prosecute some will claim it is because of political/public pressure, and of the FAIL to preosecute, others will claim bias - there is a built in perception of bias there, on the “quis custodiet ipsos custodes?” principle.

The ‘solution’ chosen up here in Toronto (and I’m the first to note it isn’t fully effective - but it appears better than the alternative) is to in effect contract out the investigation and prosecutorial decision-making concerning police/public violence to a seperate organization - here called the “Special Investigations Unit”. The hope (again, not fully realized) is that, by having a fully seperate organization, the public can be reassured that desicions to investigate and prosecute are made on the proper grounds of evidence and law - not because of ‘public pressure’ on the one hand, and not because of the cozy relationships between cops and prosecutors on the other.

Thing is, Toronto is of course an enormous jurisdiction, with huge numbers of cops and lots of resources. Obviously not every jurisdiction would be able to afford its own police-policing unit. Inthe US, such a thing would probably be best organized at the state or even federal level - I admit I have no idea how practical that would be.

That’s after practice. And white belts buy the first pitcher.


Dr. Koblinsky understands forensic evidence. You don’t. Petechiae in the areas present in Garner are from an increase of pressure in the veins of the head due to reduced venous return from the head. That isn’t going to happen due to the position Garner was in nor from chest compression. It does occur in strangulation cases of course. Not that your determination of the cause of his death makes the actions of the police any more reasonable.

Irrelevant. What took place was not a sporting event and the medical examiner did not say that the choke hold was the only factor involved in Garner’s death. But he did say it was a factor, You know, the guy that has been thoroughly trained to determine these sort of things.

Oh, one of those dojos. How cool!

Any amount of force?

Uncooperative petty criminals create more problems that just being a petty criminal. I suppose the NYC legislature could pass laws that force police officers to wait for suspects to voluntarily put themselves into handcuffs (unless you think that is also oppressive) and then wait for the suspect to climb into the back seat of a patrol vehicle. Should the suspect be allowed to sit in the front seat if they call, “SHOTGUN” before the officer does? Or maybe suspects should be transported via ambulance, just in case the suspect has a bad heart?

He said that a normal person could die from a blood choke. What I am asking if that actually ever happened. If he were a Doper, I would be saying “Cite?”

I am quite aware that chest compression (what I was taught as uki-gatame) can cause asphyxiation similar to what Garner experienced. And, according to Dr. Koblinksy could in and of itself kill a normal person. What I am looking for is evidence that a blood choke, in and of itself, could kill a normal person, which is what Dr. Koblinsky claimed. As I mentioned, neither I nor the author of Shime-waza, a book in the Ippon Masterclass series, nor some rather old studies done by the Japanese have not been able to locate even one case of a normal person dying from a blood choke.

So I would like some documentation of Dr. Koblinsky’s claim. If anyone has any, I would be glad of it.


It’s worth remembering at this time that the NYPD does not prohibit its officers from using blood chokes. The ban on chokeholds, as cited upthread extends only to those that inhibit breathing, not holds that inhibit blood flow and have little in common with traditional chokeholds except for the name.

So at this point, the entire “he used an illegal chokehold” talking point is factually incorrect.

Can you please post what post # that was cited in? Thanks.

Cite or any example of a MMA fight being stopped due to a hold when the fighter has not tapped or gone unconscious.


If you don’t let a choke hold go that person is going to go unconscious and eventually die. In combat sports, people usually tap before they go unconscious. If they don’t, there is a referee there to stop the fight when they do go unconscious.

A knee on belly situation is extremely unlikely to kill someone. The pressure isn’t in the right place to prevent chest expansion, and typically one person’s body weight isn’t enough. Problems arise when the person is chest down and then someone is putting pressure on their back.

Cite that oxygenated blood is required to live.

Joe Biden?

Depends, doesn’t it? How long do we require that they continue to live? Three, four minutes or long enough to cash their welfare check and call Al Sharpton?

Fallacy of false dichotomy.

They could follow industry best practices and attempt de-escalation.


Or, had they not been following draconian abusive policing policies that were intended to harass poor people of color they could have simply followed the course of action that most police officers do for most minor misdemeanors by handing over a summons or a ticket.

The stop and frisk and unwarranted arrests are the core problem that you so conveniently ignore.

Here’s the thing: pinning a suspect down to handcuff him - that is, the use of force - should be a last resort. The tackle and choke didn’t happen in a vacuum, we can examine the entire incident, not just the details of how Garner was cuffed and pinned. The police were confronted with an upset man, complaining that the police were harassing him. He brushed off an attempt at restraining his arms with a “Don’t touch me!”.

This individual is not a threat to anyone. He’s unarmed. He’s just pissed off. Of the various ways to handle this person, do you really believe that the first option should be surrounding and tackling him?

Again: Non-compliance doesn’t make a citizen fair game for any amount of force the police deem necessary. It’s not an all-or-nothing proposition, where police can either do nothing, or use the most force they capable of inflicting. So, merely establishing that Garner was resisting arrest (in a non-threatening, non-violent fashion, mind you) doesn’t then make any and all use of force a-ok.

Ignoring the above nonsense, it’s now your turn: Could the police officers involved have made better choices, or only Garner?

From the NYPD Patrol Guide:

Are you saying that a forearm placed around the throat and tightened, as is evident in the video, does not meet the above definition of a chokehold?

Then you have a problem with the legislature. Get elected and pass laws concerning police behavior that is more in keeping with your wishes.