Orta's prison sentence is officially set to expire on July 11, though he'll be under court supervision up until January 2022.
Orta's release is just one of several that have occurred as state governments look to stem the spread of the coronavirus in prisons. At the moment, 898 New York prisoners have been let out early because of that. A spokesperson for the Department of Corrections and Community Supervision said that they're also reviewing others that may be suitable for early release for the same reason.
In 2014, Orta had recorded police as they approached Garner to accuse him of selling loose cigarettes. One approaching officer, Daniel Pantaleo, was captured on video pulling Garner to the ground from behind by his neck. Garner is repeatedly heard throughout the footage telling officers he can't breathe.
He died shortly afterward. In 2019, it was reported that Pantaleo had been fired without a pension.
Though we're sure you probably already noted the parallels to George Floyd's death, Orta's video led to a number of protests and questions regarding tactics employed by the police.
Time reports that Orta had been arrested a number of times since 2014 due to multiple drug-related incidents, and criminal possession of a weapon.
In anticipation of his eventual release, a GoFundMe campaign was set up to raise money for Orta when he finally got out. It was setup in August 2019, and has raised more than $150,000 as of this writing. Note that Rolling Stone had reported that total around $60,000, which is to say that it's more than doubled in the past few hours.