Once video of a Staten Island man losing consciousness and eventually dying following a chokehold from an NYPD officer went viral last week, viewers made the immediate, spot on connection to an infamous scene from Spike Lee's Do the Right Thing. Apparently, Lee did as well.
Earlier this week, the director uploaded a video of 43-year-old Eric Garner's fatal Jul. 17 confrontation with police spliced with footage of Radio Raheem's demise during the film's apex. Titled "Radio Raheem And The Gentle Giant" (a nod to Garner's nickname), the video shows the eerie similarities between the two tragedies.
In the wake of the incident, Officer Daniel Pantaleo—who applied the chokehold, a move prohibited by the police department over 20 years ago—has been stripped of his gun and badge, while Officer Justin Damico has been reassigned to modified duty while an internal affairs investigation is carried out. Furthermore, the Staten Island Advance reports that Pantaleo had two civil rights lawsuits filed against him in the past.
Four EMTs who were captured on video doing little to save Garner's life have been placed on modified duty, though FDNY spokesman Jim Long called the move standard procedure for this type of incident.
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