icon bookmark-bicon bookmarkicon cameraicon checkicon chevron downicon chevron lefticon chevron righticon chevron upicon closeicon v-compressicon downloadicon editicon v-expandicon fbicon fileicon filtericon flag ruicon full chevron downicon full chevron lefticon full chevron righticon full chevron upicon gpicon insicon mailicon moveicon-musicicon mutedicon nomutedicon okicon v-pauseicon v-playicon searchicon shareicon sign inicon sign upicon stepbackicon stepforicon swipe downicon tagicon tagsicon tgicon trashicon twicon vkicon yticon wticon fm
10 Dec, 2014 22:27

‘Die-in’ for Eric Garner: Hundreds shut down mall, block streets in London protest

At least 76 protesters were arrested after a crowd stormed a London mall, blockaded roads, and shouted slogans in an anti-police brutality demonstration against a Staten Island grand jury’s ruling not to indict a police officer for Eric Garner's death.

READ MORE: #BlackLivesMatter: Anonymous calls for march of millions over police brutality

Protests under the “We Can’t Breathe” slogan began around Westfield Shopping Center in London.

Activists came out to support a recent wave of demonstrations in the US against the killing of African-American Eric Garner by white New York Police Officer Daniel Pantaleo.

@MMFlint London shopping mall shut down by the #ICantBreathe#EricGarner protest. #BlackLivesMatterpic.twitter.com/kgRi8PiJ2C

— Jen Izaakson (@Izaakson) December 10, 2014

As the protest heated up, people occupied and shut down the shopping center. The crowd was very lively, shouting slogans, jumping, and waving banners.

#EricGarner, #Ferguson solidarity protesters SHUTDOWN iconic #London mall. #ICantBreathehttp://t.co/fP3u0s81Cp

— Ruptly (@Ruptly) December 10, 2014

After staging a “die-in” by lying on the floor, protesters walked out of the mall with their hands in the air, imitating surrendering to the police.

Activists then walked out onto the streets and blockaded a main road in London. Ruptly’s footage shows activists surrounding and stopping a public bus. Several protesters blocked the route of the bus and pushed on the windshield.

Watch #EricGarner, #Ferguson protesters BLOCKADE #London road http://t.co/HITNLgBkmL#ICantBreathe

— Ruptly (@Ruptly) December 10, 2014

The bus driver eventually stopped trying to make his way through the crowd and posed for pictures with the activists.

Protesters repeatedly shouted: “What do we want? Justice! When do we want it? Now!”

Following the action, London police surrounded dozens of protesters and announced they would be arrested for “violent disorder.”

.@RT_com crew kettled by #UK police in central London at #BlackLivesMatter protest. https://t.co/bDfXxWzziz

— Harry Fear (@harryfear) December 10, 2014

RT’s Harry Fear, reporting from the scene of the protests in London, interviewed one of the demonstrators being arrested.

“We came out tonight to protest in solidarity with those in America, who are protesting against police brutality, the unlawful killing of Eric Garner...and the unlawful killing of so many black people both in America and in the UK,” Joanna said. “We are here to say that it has to stop.”

The protester described the crowd being kettled by police, adding that activists were “manhandled, and one person was put in a chokehold.” She stressed that the demonstrators were not doing anything illegal.

“We’ve been taken off one by one to police custody, where we are told that we will be charged with violent disorder, which is completely outrageous. All we’ve done here today is show our solidarity,” she said.

Police said that those taken into custody broke away from the crowd, assaulted security staff, and vandalized property.

READ MORE: Dozens arrested as NYC protests Eric Garner decision

Watch bus driver join with protesters as his bus gets blocked LIVE: http://t.co/KXvRM7D2fz#Ferguson#ICantBreathehttps://t.co/sJLPKB2npl

— Ruptly (@Ruptly) December 10, 2014

The US has witnessed protests across the country following a grand jury decision that acquitted a white New York City police officer of any wrongdoing in the death of Eric Garner, a 43-year-old black Staten Island resident, on July 17.

The incident was videotaped by a passer-by and uploaded online, causing global outrage against police brutality.

The video shows the officer placing Garner in an illegal chokehold while a group of other officers force Garner to the ground. Garner, who reportedly suffered from asthma, died after repeatedly saying, “I can’t breathe” – a phrase that has become a backbone of the protests.

BREAKING: People are gathering by the thousands in #London to support #EricGarner & #BlackLivesMatter. #ICantBreathepic.twitter.com/cAYElsoBwP

— αηιs (@H0XH4) December 10, 2014

The jury’s decision in the Garner case follows a Missouri grand jury's ruling not to indict a white police officer in the death of Michael Brown, 18, who was shot multiple times following a confrontation with police in Ferguson, Missouri despite being unarmed.

On Tuesday, protesters in Berkeley, California shut down both sides of the I-80 freeway.

READ MORE: Protesters decry Eric Garner grand jury vote LIVE UPDATES