De Blasio Heckled Over Garner Case During CNN Town Hall

Rich Lamb
August 26, 2019 - 12:35 pm
Mayor Bill de Blasio

Stephen Maturen/Getty Images

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NEW YORK (WCBS 880) — Mayor Bill de Blasio was heckled again Sunday night over his handling of the Eric Garner case, during a CNN Town Hall.

A protester, identified as Julianne Hoffenberg, with the group "Justice League NYC," interrupted the mayor as he spoke about the firing of Daniel Pantaleo from the NYPD.

She called out the names of the other officers and a lieutenant involved in Garner’s fatal 2014 arrest as CNN host Ana Cabrera asked her to “be respectful” of other audience questions.

The officers — Mark Ramos, Craig Furlani, Justin Damico — and Lt. Christopher Bannon have not been disciplined for their roles.

The mayor did not respond directly but before the shouting, he blamed delays in the Garner case on the Department of Justice.

“The United States Department of Justice failed here miserably. Five years without even deciding they were gonna act and telling the city of New York not to act – and I think we need a law in this country. A federal law that says in these dynamics, there has to be a mandate, that the Department of Justice must act,” he said.  “It could be one year, two years – whatever standard we set, they must make a decision, they must act.”

He generated applause from the audience when he said that if in the future, the DOJ does not act, “we’re going to act without them.”