This past weekend proved a significant one for the Eric Garner story. First, Garner’s death—which occurred while he was being held in an illegal chokehold by an NYPD officer—was ruled a homicide by the Medical Examiner’s office. Then, 22-year-old Ramsey Orta, the young man who taped the video of Garner being choked, was arrested on gun possession charges. He claims it was in retaliation for shooting the video, the NYPD denies this.
So, it figures that Spike Lee, one of the most outspoken critics of NYPD aggression, has taken up arms in Garner’s name, revealed an outsized tribute to the late Garner outside his production studio today.
Lee shared an Instagram photo of the new banner, which depicts a younger, well-dressed Garner alongside what may have been his last words: “I can’t breathe.” The caption for the photo reads, “Our memorial for Eric Garner in front of our 40 Acres Headquarters in Da Republic of Brooklyn, New York. Artwork by Adrian Franks. ”
For those of you who have been following Lee relatively closely, this is the fourth time he’s shared this image of Garner on his Instagram, captioning the photo the first time with the epitaph, “Rest In Power.”
If you’re interested in seeing the banner in real life, head to Lee’s 40 Acres and A Mule Filmworks production office at 75 S. Elliot Place in Fort Greene to give it a look.
Follow Nikita Richardson on Twitter @nikitarbk