“When I went to the grand jury to speak on my behalf, nobody in the grand jury was even paying attention to what I had to say,” Orta said. “People were on their phones, people were talking. I feel like they didn’t give (Garner) a fair grand jury. “People was on their phones, people were having side conversations, like it was just a regular day to them,” he said of the jurors.I just had jury duty. You cannot enter the courthouse with your cell phone. It is taken from you after you go through the metal detectors. You are given a number that corresponds with the spot your phone is in. Now I'll be totally honest and say that I saw one person with his cell phone while I was waiting to be called in. On the last jury trial I was on, a court officer came into the room where we gathered and had us give him our phones for the day. So unless someone who was ON the grand jury comes out and verifies this claim, I'm calling this guy a liar. Now let me go onto the other part of his story:
One of them “wasn’t even asking no questions about the police officer, he was asking all the questions toward Eric,” Orta said. “What was Eric doing there? Why was Eric there? “Nothing pertaining to the cop choking him,” he said.Here's the thing. This line of questioning implies that the juror was thinking about the reason for contact with Garner. The thinking here would be that since Garner was selling "loosies" and had been arrested for doing that before, that the officer was justified in his contact with Garner. I share Orta's feeling that such a concentration on what Garner was doing was problematic. No one is disputing that the officers had a legal authority to arrest Garner, though I, as well as many others have issues with this idea of arresting someone over selling a loose cigarette (not to minors). The issue was and is not whether the officers had the authority to arrest Garner, the actions in question was HOW that arrest was effected. The chokehold and the subsequent chest compressions that directly lead to Garner's death. In that sense Orta really shouldn't have even been brought in for questioning because he provided evidence (the video) and only needed to verify that he took it.