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The NYPD officer accused of fatally choking Eric Garner could soon be much closer to learning his career fate

Daniel Pantaleo, the New York Police Department officer at the center of the arrest that allegedly led to Eric Garner's death, is expected to learn the latest decision in a process that could end his career, two senior law enforcement officials and a city official told CNN. CNN's Shimon Prokupecz reports.

Posted: Aug 1, 2019 3:00 PM
Updated: Aug 1, 2019 3:00 PM

The New York Police Department officer at the center of the arrest that allegedly led to Eric Garner's death is expected to learn as early as Friday the latest decision in a process that could end his career, two senior law enforcement officials and a city official told CNN.

Daniel Pantaleo's career has been in jeopardy since he was caught on video in July 2014 putting the unarmed black father in an alleged chokehold. Now, after a spring disciplinary trial, NYPD Deputy Commissioner of Trials Rosemarie Maldonado is expected to deliver, perhaps by week's end, her recommendation on whether Pantaleo should be terminated to Police Commissioner James O'Neill and officials with the city agency charged with NYPD oversight.

Civilian Complaint Review Board leaders and Pantaleo's attorney then will have about two weeks to draft a response, and O'Neill has the final say; he's never hinted at what he may do. The crux of the case remains whether Pantaleo used a chokehold, which is banned by the NYPD; the officer denies he used the move.

The internal police process comes to a head just weeks after Attorney General William Barr declined to bring federal charges against the embattled officer. The issue of Pantaleo's employment also took center stage during Wednesday night's Democratic primary debate, as protesters screamed, "Fire Pantaleo!" while New York Mayor Bill de Blasio shared the stage with other candidates for president.

"There's going to be justice. I have confidence in that," de Blasio said during the debate, adding that Pantaleo's professional fate should be decided within the next 30 days. "For the first time, we are not waiting on the federal Justice Department, which told the city of New York that we could not proceed because the Justice Department was pursuing their prosecution."

O'Neill weighed in Thursday morning on the overall timetable for the pending Pantaleo decision.

"I'm anticipating that that should come shortly, you know, within the next week or two, and then we'll move forward," O'Neill said on the "The Joe Piscopo Show" on AM 970 The Answer.

'This is what democracy looks like'

Garner died on July 17, 2014, after police attempted to arrest the 43-year-old father of six, who was allegedly selling loose cigarettes illegally on Staten Island, a crime for which he previously he had been arrested.

Garner's friend, Ramsey Orta, recorded the confrontation on his cell phone as it quickly escalated.

In the video, Pantaleo can be seen wrapping one arm around Garner's shoulder and the other around his neck before jerking him back and pulling him to the ground. As Pantaleo forces Garner's head into the sidewalk, Garner can be heard saying, "I can't breathe. I can't breathe."

Federal investigators began examining the circumstances of Garner's death in 2014, after a grand jury in New York declined to indict the Staten Island officer. The city settled with Garner's estate in 2015 for $5.9 million.

Meanwhile, Pantaleo has been on desk duty since the incident.

Activists and lawyers for the Civilian Complaint Review Board call the maneuver Pantaleo used on Garner an illegal chokehold. But union officials and the officer's lawyers describe it as a "seatbelt hold" -- a takedown move taught to rookies at the police academy -- and blame Garner's death on his poor health.

"Mr. Garner died from being morbidly obese" and having other health issues, Pantaleo's attorney, Stuart London, said earlier this year. "He was a ticking time bomb and set these facts in motion by resisting arrest."

Garner's death brought the Black Lives Matter movement to the forefront in New York, with protesters marching in the streets. Five years later, Garner's death remains a fervent topic locally and on the national stage.

"To the protestors in the audience today: I heard you. I saw you. I thank you," de Blasio tweeted. "This is what democracy looks like and no one said it was pretty."

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 68293

Reported Deaths: 1944
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Hinds5656118
DeSoto368031
Harrison253036
Madison244368
Rankin229235
Jackson228843
Jones191659
Forrest182056
Washington168942
Lee147941
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Lamar122614
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Warren109533
Lowndes108538
Panola106214
Sunflower105425
Scott100320
Lafayette98317
Copiah95728
Leflore94765
Pike93836
Holmes90049
Grenada84921
Yazoo83312
Lincoln83241
Pontotoc8308
Simpson80330
Monroe80155
Leake79025
Wayne77421
Coahoma77213
Tate73629
Marshall7019
Marion68420
Union64316
Adams62925
Winston62316
Covington62113
George5895
Pearl River55439
Newton54311
Tallahatchie53011
Attala52325
Walthall50120
Chickasaw47019
Noxubee45912
Alcorn4345
Tishomingo4216
Calhoun4209
Prentiss41710
Claiborne40913
Smith40613
Clay39714
Hancock39514
Jasper3889
Itawamba37510
Tippah36713
Tunica3517
Clarke32626
Montgomery3265
Lawrence3228
Yalobusha31510
Humphreys29411
Quitman2701
Carroll26111
Greene25512
Perry2437
Amite2356
Webster23512
Kemper23414
Jefferson Davis2336
Wilkinson21113
Stone2055
Sharkey1995
Jefferson1957
Benton1431
Choctaw1354
Franklin1312
Issaquena262
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Confirmed Cases: 99926

Reported Deaths: 1781
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Jefferson13258244
Mobile10517207
Montgomery6835149
Madison544734
Tuscaloosa423076
Baldwin365125
Unassigned363064
Shelby330936
Marshall318937
Lee270047
Morgan241118
Etowah216232
DeKalb183013
Calhoun180717
Elmore173138
Walker153964
Houston141912
Russell13872
St. Clair135418
Limestone134913
Dallas133123
Franklin128820
Cullman122712
Colbert120716
Lauderdale118919
Autauga117421
Escambia108717
Talladega104814
Jackson10144
Tallapoosa86579
Chambers84438
Dale83525
Clarke82610
Blount8124
Chilton8097
Butler76736
Coffee7646
Covington73720
Pike7087
Marion58026
Barbour5765
Lowndes57324
Marengo56515
Hale47826
Bullock46611
Winston45711
Perry4454
Washington44312
Bibb4425
Wilcox43210
Monroe4215
Pickens4049
Randolph40310
Conecuh39310
Sumter36418
Lawrence3512
Macon33914
Crenshaw3265
Choctaw28712
Cherokee2758
Henry2643
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Geneva2631
Greene25211
Lamar2292
Fayette2125
Cleburne1271
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