Giuliani Slams De Blasio: 'Creating Atmosphere for Protests, Violence'
Protests erupted last night after a Staten Island grand jury declined to indict New York City Police Officer Daniel Pantaleo in connection with the chokehold death of an unarmed man earlier this year.
Eric Garner, a black 43-year-old man who was stopped on suspicion of selling loose cigarettes, died as a result of the July 17 encounter.
In the disturbing arrest video, taken with a cell phone camera, Garner can he heard saying "I can't breathe" 11 times.
Former NYC Mayor Rudy Giuliani reacted this morning on "Fox and Friends," declining to give an opinion on the decision since he said he does not have all the facts.
The former U.S. attorney said in general, he found grand juries to be very conscientious during his legal career and called the Staten Island D.A. a "close friend" and an "extraordinarily fair man."
"I have to imagine this case was presented in a very professional way and the grand jury reached a result that I'm sure they believe was right," he said, asking people not to draw conclusions based solely on the video.
Mayor Bill de Blasio generated some criticism yesterday when he said after the news broke that the tense situation has been created by "centuries of racism."
“This helps to create this atmosphere of protest, and even sometimes violence. There was no racism in this case,” Giuliani said, arguing he has seen no evidence to indicate that the same actions would not have been taken by the officer if the suspect had been white and resisting arrest.
Giuliani also criticized de Blasio for saying he worries about the safety of his son and that families now need to be concerned for their children's safety around cops.
He argued de Blasio is making a "racist" argument by highlighting police shootings, rather than black-on-black crime.
"This is like you have two streets. 96 percent of your accidents take place on one street, two percent take place on the other. And the mayor is telling his son, 'worry about the one with the two percent, not the one with the 96 percent,'" said Giuliani, adding that police officers should never use deadly force without justification and he has convicted officers who have.
Giuliani said parents of every race should tell their children to act appropriately around police officers.
Watch the full interview above, plus tune in tonight at 8/11p ET as Giuliani joins Bill O'Reilly.