December 4, 2014
(TheAntiMedia) Ramsey Orta, the man who filmed the fatal incident on July 17, 2014 between NYPD Officer Daniel Pantaleo, and Eric Garner, his friend and the now deceased man accused selling un-taxed cigarettes on a NYC street, went in front of a Grand Jury September 1, 2014. He was indicted on what he says were trumped up charges as retaliation for filming the incident for which Officer Pantaleo was not indicted.
According to the Huffington Post:
“Police alleged that Orta had slipped a .25 caliber handgun into a teenage accomplice’s waistband outside a New York hotel. Orta testified that the charges were falsely mounted by police in retaliation for his role in documenting Garner’s death, but the grand jury rejected his contention, charging him with single felony counts of third-degree criminal weapon possession and criminal firearm possession.”
Raw Story reported Orta stating in an interview with the Advance that he was also threatened at that time:
“When they searched me, they didn’t find nothing on me…and the same cop that searched me, he told me clearly himself, that karma’s a b*tch, what goes around comes around,” Orta said, adding later, “I had nothing to do with this. I would be stupid to walk around with a gun after me being in the spotlight.”
Orta talked about the incident that day between Garner and police in an interview with Time.com, and stated that Garner had actually had been breaking up a fight, and as the two guys fighting walked across the street, the NYPD showed up and kept their attention on Garner, who they accused of selling un-taxed cigarettes.
Orta recounted the situation then escalated from there, where Pantaleo took Garner down with the fateful chokehold. Orta says he then watched Garner’s eyes roll back in his head and his mouth foam after he kept saying he couldn’t breathe, and he “knew he was gone”.
In an interview with Orta by the New York Daily News, Orta talked about his Grand Jury proceeding:
“I feel like it wasn’t fair at all,” he said. “It wasn’t fair from the start.”
“When I went to the grand jury to speak on my behalf, nobody in the grand jury was even paying attention to what I had to say,” Orta said. “People were on their phones, people were talking. I feel like they didn’t give (Garner) a fair grand jury.”
“The whole thing was just about Eric — why was he selling cigarettes, did you know he was selling cigarettes? It was bulls–t,” he said.
The Department of Justice states they are opening a civil rights investigation into Garner’s case, Obama has proposed $263M for police body cameras and NYC Mayor De Blasio calls for NYPD to use them as a solution to excessive force, but those accountability bandaids don’t address the root problem of escalating police brutality across the nation or make it all better.