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New York police union wants mayor, commish out over Garner firing

Pat Lynch, president of the NYC Police Benevolent Association, speaks during a press conference after the announcement of the termination of officer Daniel Pantaleo at PBA headquarters on August 19, 2019 in New York City. (Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

NEW YORK (AP) – New York City’s largest police union says the mayor and police commissioner should lose their jobs over the firing last week of an officer in the 2014 chokehold death of Eric Garner.

Police Benevolent Association delegates unanimously approved no confidence resolutions Wednesday calling for Mayor Bill de Blasio’s removal from office and Commissioner James O’Neill’s immediate resignation.

Union president Patrick Lynch said the Aug. 19 firing of Officer Daniel Pantaleo for using a banned chokehold on Garner was the final straw in “an appalling pattern of malfeasance.”

A de Blasio spokeswoman says the vote “is another attempt by the (union) to divide our city and we won’t stand for it.”

Police spokesman Phil Walzak said O’Neill’s “heart and soul are with the NYPD” and that he’s honored to lead the department.

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