A Queens grand jury declined to indict a former NYPD officer caught on camera appearing to choke a man until he passed out — the first criminal case brought against a police officer after the state made chokeholds illegal.
David Afanador was cleared of criminal strangulation charges Tuesday nearly 15 months after cell phone video went viral capturing the arrest of 35-year-old Ricky Bellevue on the Rockaway boardwalk on June 21, 2020, the New York Post reports.
Afanador, 40, can be seen in the 29-second clip video with his arms around Bellevue’s neck as three other officers try to handcuff him.
Afanador let go of Bellevue after he was tapped on the back by another cop who told him to “back off.”
Afanador was the first officer charged under the new law.