Family Renews Calls for Civil Rights Charges a Year After Garner’s Death

A rally outside the federal courthouse in Brooklyn on Saturday, protesting Mr. Garner’s death. Credit Damon Winter/The New York Times

A rally outside the federal courthouse in Brooklyn on Saturday, protesting Mr. Garner’s death. Credit Damon Winter/The New York Times

Nikita Stewart and Benjamin Mueller write:

Hundreds of people converged on a lawn in front of the federal courthouse in Brooklyn on Saturday to demand that federal civil rights charges be filed in the death of Eric Garner, focusing attention on the latest chapter of his family’s yearlong push for police accountability.

At the rally, sponsored by the Rev. Al Sharpton’s National Action Network, Mr. Garner’s family renewed calls for charges against the officer who put him in a chokehold, and reflected on a year of sustained activism.

Esaw Garner, Mr. Garner’s widow, approached the microphone on a stage, sighed and said, “I can’t breathe.” Her husband spoke the same words 11 times as he was being restrained on a sidewalk.

Ms. Garner said she gets nervous appearing in front of crowds, but the support kept her going. “I feel like a flat balloon until I see you,” she told the audience.

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