BLACK VOICES

Al Sharpton Calls For March In Washington After Eric Garner Ruling

Rev. Al Sharpton (L), President of the National Action Network, Esaw Garner (R), widow of Eric Garner,  and son Emory Garner
Rev. Al Sharpton (L), President of the National Action Network, Esaw Garner (R), widow of Eric Garner, and son Emory Garner (C) hold a press conference December 3, 2014 in New York, after a grand jury decided not to charge a white police officer in the choking death of Eric Garner, a black man, days after a similar decision sparked renewed unrest in Missouri. Eric Garner died after being placed in a chokehold by New York police Officer Daniel Pantaleo while being arrested on suspicion of selling untaxed cigarettes in Staten Island. AFP PHOTO / Timothy A. CLARY (Photo credit should read TIMOTHY A. CLARY/AFP/Getty Images)

NEW YORK, Dec 3 (Reuters) - Civil rights activist Al Sharpton on Wednesday called for a protest march in Washington following a New York grand jury decision not to indict a white policeman in the chokehold death of an unarmed black man.

"We have no confidence in local state prosecutions because state prosecutors work hand in hand with the local police," the veteran civil rights activist told a news conference in Harlem to announce the Dec. 13 march.

Appearing with Sharpton were the mother and widow of Eric Garner, 43, a father of six who died in July after police used a banned chokehold while arresting him for selling loose cigarettes.

"This thing is just breaking my heart, just pulling me apart," said Gwen Carr, Garner's mother.

Esaw Garner, his widow, said: "Who's gonna play Santa Claus for my kids this year?" (Writing by Ellen Wulfhorst, Reporting by Frank McGurty; Editing by Sandra Maler)