CNN- The New York Police Department on Monday said it will go ahead with disciplinary proceedings against the officer seen holding Eric Garner in a chokehold if the US Department of Justice doesn’t announce by the end of August whether it will press federal charges.
Today marks four years since Garner died after police attempted to arrest the 43-year-old father of six for allegedly selling cigarettes illegally in Staten Island.
Video of the incident shows officer Daniel Pantaleo tackling Garner from behind and taking him to the ground using a department-banned chokehold. Pantaleo has remained on NYPD’s payroll since the 2014 incident.
In a Monday letter to the DOJ, NYPD Deputy Commissioner of Legal Matters Lawrence Byrne wrote that the police department delayed starting the disciplinary process at the request of the DOJ so it would not impact the DOJ investigation.
“However, based on our most recent conversations, it has become clear that a definite date by which time a final decision by the US DOJ will be rendered in this matter cannot be predicted,” Byrne wrote.
Byrne added that due to the “extraordinary passage of time,” any further delay in starting the internal proceedings “can no longer be justified.”