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Another obesity-related death


A grand jury in New York on Wednesday decided not to indict white police officer Daniel Pantaleo in the July choke hold death of Eric Garner, an unarmed black man, according to two law enforcement officials.

During the fatal encounter July 17 Garner raised both hands in the air and told the officers not to touch him. Seconds later, a video shows an officer behind Garner grab him in a choke hold and pull him to the sidewalk, rolling him onto his stomach.

“I can’t breathe! I can’t breathe!” Garner said repeatedly, his cries muffled into the pavement.

The grand jury was made up of 14 white and nine nonwhite members.

The cause of Garner’s death was “compression of neck (choke hold), compression of chest and prone positioning during physical restraint by police,” the medical examiner’s office has said. The death was ruled a homicide.

The New York City Police Department prohibits choke holds.

The original lede in the Times’ story described the scene below as a “violent confrontation,” between Eric Garner and the police, which sounds like a much more symmetrical encounter than evidence suggests (The story has since been edited to remove that phrase. This archived version retains the word “confronation,” but the adjective “violent” was gone already):

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