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Tue Oct 25, 2016, 09:05 AM

Eric Garner chokehold case given over to new investigating team at Justice Department [View all]

Source: NY Daily News

Federal prosecutors and FBI agents in New York have ceded control of the civil rights probe of Eric Garner's chokehold death to a new investigative team based in the Justice Department.

Sources said that since the Eastern District of New York crew had recommended that NYPD Officer Daniel Pantaleo's actions did not rise to the level of a federal crime it was not possible for the Brooklyn-based agents to see the case through to the end.

Civil rights officials in Washington, disagreed with the recommendation, leading to a highly unusual split in the investigation that has dragged on for more than two years, sources said.

"I wouldn't use the word 'replaced' to describe what happened," to the New York prosecutors and agents, said a law enforcement source familiar with the investigation. "You could say they didn't want to go forward."....

The decision whether to seek a federal indictment will ultimately be made by the Justice Department's civil rights division and Attorney General Loretta Lynch. There had been a prosecutor from the Washington civil rights office working with the Eastern District prosecutors on the case in Brooklyn.

Evidence in the Staten Island death was presented to a grand jury earlier this year, but the panel has yet to vote on it.

Read more: http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/eric-garner-case-hands-new-doj-investigative-team-article-1.2843709?cid=bitly

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