An NYPD police officer was caught on camera using a chokehold on a Black man just weeks after New York City banned the use of chokeholds by cops.
In the graphic clip, the eyewitness in the video can be heard yelling, “He’s out, he’s out, he’s out. Look, look, officer!” The incident occurred in Rockaway Park, Queens, according to bystanders who recorded the video.
By the end of the video the man, identified as Ricky Bellevue, appears to be non-respondent, but cops said the man is alive. According to them, the whole incident escalated simply because the man threw a bottle at an officer.
The NYPD released a statement about the Queens incident, saying:
“We are aware of the video and there is an active use of force investigation https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=9QhjtageapEunderway by the Internal Affairs Bureau. This matter is taken extremely seriously and we expect to have an update this evening as the investigation unfolds.” The Queens Legal Defense Fund said they would take on representing Bellevue.
Meanwhile, activists and politicians have slammed the incident, including City Council candidate Anthony Beckford.
“Officer Afanador, Badge # 31730 of the @NYPD100Pct @NYPDnews at Far Rockaway Beach performing an Illegal modern day lynching chokehold on a Black Man until he was unconscious. I demand his immediate firing & criminal charges for breaking the city & state ban. #DefundThePolice.”