New York Rep. Charlie Rangel says he's "OK" with the Eric Garner ruling, because "it's not going to stand"
Rangel is a former New York prosecutor
Longtime New York Rep. Charlie Rangel, a Democrat, says he is “OK” with the ruling not to indict the white police officer whose July chokehold during an arrest killed Eric Garner, an unarmed black man, because “it’s not going to stand.”
“It’s such a ridiculous scenario that I’m OK with it – because it’s not going to stand,” Rangel said on CNN’s “The Lead with Jake Tapper.”
Earlier Thursday, the court released details about the evidence given to the grand jury, including the number of witnesses and pieces of evidence involved in the case. But Rangel says the court has made a “terrible mistake” by not explaining exactly how the grand jury reached their verdict.
“Releasing this is releasing absolutely nothing,” Rangel said. “We want to find out just one thing: A group of people were there, one of them got killed, and the rest of them were police. Simple as that.”
The medical examiner affirmed it was a homicide, Rangel added.
“Now, setting aside suicide, something happened in that room to convince the people that were there that nothing happened,” he said. “And we just want to find out: How could they have possibly reached that conclusion?”
Rangel, a former New York prosecutor, also said it was a “stupid mistake” that the other police officers involved in the incident were granted immunity because not enough details about their involvement in Garner’s death have been explained.
“Immunity is given in order to gain the cooperation of witnesses in order to further the indictment that brings the case to court,” Rangel said. “Here police officers shouldn’t need immunity to tell the truth. If you insist on immunity, it means you think you should be indicted for a crime.”
Rangel said he hopes the pending federal investigation illuminates what went on during the grand jury proceedings.
On Wednesday, the President said he and outgoing Attorney General Eric Holder are “not going to let up” in the effort to solve the problem of racial tensions that exists between law enforcement officers and minorities in communities nationwide.