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NYPD preparing for demonstrations after grand jury decision

Update: No charges for NYPD officer in Eric Garner chokehold death case

NEW YORK - Mayor Bill de Blasio and his administration are preparing for any demonstrations that may come after a grand jury decision in a fatal police chokehold case.

A law enforcement source told CBS News that grand jury is expected to vote Wednesday on whether or not to indict NYPD officer Daniel Pantaleo in connection with the death of Eric Garner, who died as police were attempting to arrest him for illegally selling cigarettes on Staten Island.

It is not known when the announcement on that decision will be made by the Staten Island District Attorney. Daniel Donovan

He declined to say Tuesday when he expects to announce whether Pantaleo will face criminal charges.

"I'd like the New Yorkers to be patient. The grand jury has been diligently listening to evidence, and we await their decision," he said.

The grand jury began hearing evidence in the case Sept. 29.

CBS New York reported officers will be following a "tolerant but tougher" method and will limit the types of demonstration activities protesters are allowed to conduct.

Last week, thousands of demonstrators marched around the city in reaction of a Ferguson, Mo., grand jury's decision not to indict former officer Darren Wilson in the shooting death of Michael Brown. Garner's death took place about three weeks before Brown's.

Protest activities included blocking an entrance to the Lincoln Tunnel, blocking traffic on the FDR Drive and the West Side Highway, and shutting down the Queens-Midtown Tunnel.

NYPD Commissioner Bill Bratton said the department will not tolerate such actions and extra police will be on hand to enforce the policy.

"If we ask you to get out of the street, you should probably get out of the street," said NYPD Chief of Department James O'Neill. "We need to get traffic, and we need to get emergency vehicles through. We have to balance their rights with the rights of the other 8 1/2 million New Yorkers."

Bratton said no matter what the grand jury decides, he anticipates demonstrations and that the NYPD is readying for that eventuality. He said also that that he met Monday with city and religious leaders on Staten Island.

Officials said, however, that police responses to demonstrations would not be "heavy handed" unless anyone is injured or property is damaged.

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