Judge To Hear Requests To Unseal Eric Garner Grand Jury Proceedings

January 5, 2015 | Rhett Jones

As the death of Eric Garner continues to have ripple effects throughout NYC, some activists are requesting more information be released from the grand jury proceedings. The proceedings did not bring any criminal charges against members of the NYPD.

Garner died due to health complications after being detained by NYPD officers, one of whom was accused of using an unauthorized chokehold. As protests and counter-protests have shaken the city, activists have pointed to the Michael Brown grand jury case in Ferguson, Missouri as an example of an extreme case in which more information than usual was released about the jury proceedings.

According to CBS News:

The Legal Aid Society, New York City Public Advocate Letitia James and the New York Civil Liberties Union have all filed petitions seeking the release of transcripts from the proceedings, instructions given to the grand jury and evidence presented to the grand jury.

“The outcome of grand jury proceeding has left many questions as to whether secret grand jury proceedings are instruments of injustice and whether the grand jury system should be abolished,” NYCLU Executive Director Donna Lieberman said in a statement last month. “The Garner grand jury is central to that public discussion. And it is important to that conversation for the public to know how and why the grand jury reached the conclusions that it did.”

A new judge has been appointed to hear arguments for more information after the previous presiding judge recused himself on December 19th due to a potential conflict of interest involving his spouse.

Activists are asking for those who would like more information to pack the State Supreme Courtroom today as arguments begin.

(Photo: Hezakya Mixologist)