Pete King: Eric Garner Wouldn’t Have Died From Chokehold If He Weren’t ‘Obese’

FILE - House Homeland Security Committee Chairman Rep. Peter King, R-N.Y. testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington, in this Feb. 16, 2011 file photo. A coalition of over 100 interfaith, nonprofit and governmental org... FILE - House Homeland Security Committee Chairman Rep. Peter King, R-N.Y. testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington, in this Feb. 16, 2011 file photo. A coalition of over 100 interfaith, nonprofit and governmental organizations plans to rally in New York City Sunday March 6, 2011 against a planned congressional hearing scheduled by U.S. Rep. Peter J. King of New York on Muslims' role in homegrown terrorism. (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta, File) MORE LESS
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While many on the right condemned a grand jury’s decision not to indict a white police officer for placing a black man in a fatal chokehold, Rep. Peter King (R-NY) defended the officer Wednesday and said that if the victim were healthier the whole thing could have been avoided.

NYPD Officer Daniel Pantaleo was not charged in the death of Eric Garner, 43, whom he put in a chokehold during a July confrontation over Garner’s selling loose, untaxed cigarettes. Garner, who suffered from asthma and other health problems, later died in the hospital and the city’s medical examiner ruled his death a homicide.

“You had a 350-pound person who was resisting arrest. The police were trying to bring him down as quickly as possible,” King said in an appearance on CNN’s “The Situation Room.” “If he had not had asthma and a heart condition and was so obese, almost definitely he would not have died from this. The police had no reason to know he was in serious condition.”

The confrontation between Pantaleo and Garner was also caught on video that showed Garner repeatedly telling the officer he couldn’t breathe. King said police hear that kind of thing all the time.

“But if you can’t breathe, you can’t talk,” he argued.

The Long Island congressman also dismissed the idea that any racial animus played into Garner’s death.

“I have no doubt, if that were a 350-pound white guy, he would have been treated the same,” King told CNN.

Earlier Wednesday, the congressman tweeted his thanks to the grand jury for not indicting Pantaleo:

Watch below via CNN:

This post has been updated.

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Notable Replies

  1. Avatar for anniew anniew says:

    Resisting arrest. For, presumably, selling loosies even though it wasn’t shown that Garner was doing that at the time. Good thing Garner wasn’t scalping a ticket, then we would have had to bring in the SWAT team,

    BTW, what was King’s take on Cliven Bundy?

    King is despicable.

  2. Lying scumbag P.O.S. says what!?!?

    So now it’s the death penalty for shoplifting and obesity? That chokehold was illegal.

    Better watch out Wal*Mart shoppers!

    No, this decision does not have to be respected.
    I have, however, now officially lost all respect for Law Enforcement in this country. How quickly we have become a third world banana republic.

  3. If being overweight is now considered a capital offense, then there’s a lot of us on death row.

    Every time you think a right-winger can’t possibly say something more stupid, they set a new low.

  4. Avatar for anniew anniew says:

    It’s funny, we keep hearing about Muslims needing to speak out against terrorists, blacks needing to “police” their own, etc. When will we start hearing that COPS need to speak out when they see their own doing wrong?

  5. Yes, absolutely correct.

    We need the police to police their own.

    Too bad that will never happen.

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