Federal prosecutors announced Tuesday that they wouldn’t bring charges against the NYPD officer who killed Eric Garner.
The Department of Justice made the announcement almost five years to the day that Officer Daniel Pantaleo used an illegal choke hold to arrest Garner for selling loose cigarettes, setting of a chain of events that led Garner to being pronounced dead at a hospital shortly afterward.
More than any other single event, Garner’s death helped end the widespread use of the controversial policing strategy known as “Stop and Frisk.” With the technique, officers could temporarily detain and search anyone they reasonably suspected of having a weapon, the police claimed, in order to reduce gun violence.
As the nation’s largest police force moved away from the widespread use of Stop and Frisk, it began to change how its officers approached the communities where they work. Under new commissioner James P. O’Neill, the NYPD began to roll out neighborhood policing.