New York Post
August 9, 2014

 

Sharpton won’t march NYPD chokehold death protesters over bridge

By Georgett Roberts and Kathianne Boniello

The Rev. Al Sharpton is backing down from his “We Will Not Go Back” march.

The planned protest on Aug. 23 will now bring demonstrators over the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge by bus and car, not via a span-clogging march, Sharpton confirmed Saturday.

Once over the bridge, protesters will march from the site where Eric Garner was killed at Bay Street and Victory Boulevard, to the Richmond Terrace offices of Staten Island District Attorney Dan Donovan.

Garner, 43, died July 17 as police officers, who were arresting him for selling untaxed cigarettes, put him in an NYPD-prohibited choke hold during a videotaped encounter. The city Medical Examiner ruled the death a homicide and prosecutors are weighing charges against the cops.

Sharpton’s retreat on the bridge protest comes a day after Mayor Bill de Blasio, under fire for giving the controversial activist too much prominence in the wake of Garner’s death, suggested the reverend change his plans.

The vehicle caravan will likely slow bridge traffic but not intentionally, said Sharpton, who added the goal was to “speed up justice.”

Sharpton repeated his call that the Staten Island D.A. either make an arrest or turn the case over to federal authorities.

Police advocates have slammed the ME’s homicide ruling, with PBA head Patrick Lynch insisting the 350-pound Garner wasn’t put in a chokehold, and should not have been resisting arrest.