On Monday, Ramsey Orta, the man who filmed Eric Garner’s death, was sentenced to 4 years in prison on weapon and drug charges.
Justice Stephen Rooney read out the sentence in Staten Island Supreme Court as Orta told his family, “It will be okay” and protesters chanted “No justice no peace! F–k these racist police!” as they held their fists in the air while Orta was being handcuffed.
Orta’s supporters have said that he is a victim of police retaliation for filming Eric Garner’s final moments and have expressed concerns about his well-being while he is serving his sentence.
“We’re feeling really upset,” said Lisa Ricardo, Orta’s aunt. “I would tell the police, don’t touch him. Hands off Ramsey. Leave him alone in jail.”
According to police, Orta was caught selling heroin, crack cocaine, marijuana, oxycodone and anti-anxiety pills to an undercover office nine times, and he was also caught with a .25-caliber handgun.
“Ramsey filmed Eric’s last words, and that’s how my child will hear his voice,” said Jewel Miller, the mother of Eric Garner’s youngest child. “Ramsey Orta is a young boy. He’s just getting into adulthood. He’s just becoming a man and it’s really sad.”