NEW YORK (PIX11) -- Demonstrators took to the streets for a third night in a row to protest the Eric Garner grand jury decision.
Dozens stormed the Apple store on 57th Street and 5th Avenue, holding signs and chanting as they marched through the store.
Others converged in Macy's and Bryant Park, staging "die-ins."
More than 200 arrests were made on Thursday night.
Demonstrators overran the Staten Island Ferry Terminal, prompting authorities to stop the ferry from departing. Marchers staged a "die-in" on Atlantic Avenue in Brooklyn, laying on street with coffins in silence.
An estimated 7,5000 gathered in Foley Square Thursday evening, and hundreds other organized in Union Square.
The crowd moved to Brooklyn Bridge shortly before 7 p.m., but had to go elsewhere when police blocked off the bridge. Protesters began chanting "Broadway! Pass it down!"
The West Side Highway and Holland and Lincoln tunnels were also scenes of a massive gathering.
The diverse crowd is venting its outrage over the Staten Island grand jury's decision not to indict the Officer Daniel Pantaleo involved in the death of Garner. On Thursday night, protesters also were gathering in places including Union Square and the Manhattan approach to the Brooklyn Bridge.
Another contingent of protesters blocked traffic on the West Side Highway, many chanting "I can't breathe." The largest group, as of 7:30 p.m., was located near Chambers Street and Broadway, heading north.
Protesters are taking to the streets in largely peaceful demonstrations demanding justice for Garner, who died July 17 after being put in an apparent chokehold by Officer Daniel Pantaleo.
Garner was being arrested on suspicion of selling loose, untaxed cigarettes, or "loosies."
Hours after the grand jury's decision was revealed, bridges and tunnels as well as Times Square, Grand Central, Union Square and Rockefeller Center -- where the annual Christmas tree lighting ceremony went off without a hitch -- became hot spots for protesters.
PIX11 News is on air and in the streets covering this ongoing story. Follow our live blog, below, for the latest developments:
PBA president Patrick J.
“While we are pleased with the Grand Jury’s decision, there are no winners here
today. There was a loss of life that both a family and a police officer
will always have to live with. It is clear that the officer’s intention
was to do nothing more than take Mr. Garner into custody as instructed and that
he used the take down technique that he learned in the academy when Mr. Garner
refused. No police officer starts a shift intending to take another human
being’s life and we are all saddened by this tragedy.”
Officer Daniel Pantaleo said:
“I became a police officer to help people and to protect those who can’t
protect themselves. It is never my intention to harm anyone and I feel
very bad about the death of Mr. Garner. My family and I include him and
his family in our prayers and I hope that they will accept my personal
condolences for their loss.”
“My heart and prayers go out
to the Garner family. I understand and respect the anger and frustration that
many are feeling right now, but I join Mayor de Blasio and the Garner family in
calling for a peaceful response from anyone who may choose to exercise their
right to protest. As New Yorkers, we have a proud history of respectful
and peaceful protests. Continuing that leadership is critical to moving
forward together toward meaningful reform.” — Attorney General Schneiderman
“There’s no question that this grand jury had an immensely difficult task before them, but I have full faith that their judgment was fair and reasoned and I applaud DA Donovan for overseeing this case with the utmost integrity. As we all pray for the Garner family, I hope that we can now move forward and begin to heal together as a community.”
Rep. Michael G. Grimm represents Staten Island and parts of southern Brooklyn in the U.S. House of Representatives.
If Eric Garner’s tragic death teaches us anything, it’s that we as Americans need to heal the frayed relationship between our police and the neighborhoods they serve—whether it’s in Ferguson, Missouri or Staten Island. We must build a society where all people are treated fairly and equally under the law, regardless of their race. My heart goes out to Mr. Garner’s family, and I call on all New Yorkers who wish to protest the Grand Jury’s decision to respect his family’s wishes and do so in a peaceful, non-violent manner. — NYC Comptroller Scott M. Stringer
Mayor Bill de Blasio reacts to grand jury decision. WATCH LIVE: http://pix11.com/on-air/live-streaming/
“Eric Garner was a husband, father and member of the New York family.
“The circumstances surrounding his death were nothing short of tragic. And while there will be people who disagree with today’s grand jury decision, it is important that we respect the legal process and rule of law. At the same time, the justice system also allows for additional investigations and reviews, and it may be appropriate for the federal government to do so in this case. And if there are improvements to be made and lessons to be learned, we at the state level are ready to act to better the system.
“I stand with the Garner family and urge those wishing to voice their opposition to today’s ruling to do so peacefully.
“My thoughts and prayers are with Mr. Garner’s family and friends as they continue to grieve during this difficult time.”
–Governor Andrew M. Cuomo
Arrests seen near 47th Street and 6th Avenue. Photo by James Ford. http://tribwpix.files.wordpress.com/2014/12/img_5215.jpg?w=768
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Police are now blocking the Lincoln Tunnel from hundreds of protesters.
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According to sources: There are now 800-1000 protesters in Foley Square and at least another 100 in Union Square. Large police presence at Brooklyn Bridge.
NYPD is reporting that an officer is unconscious on West 51st Street and 8th Avenue.