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John Minchillo, Associated Press
A memorial for Eric Garner rests on the pavement near the site of his death, Saturday, July 19, 2014, in the Staten Island borough of New York. The wife of a man who died after a police officer used an apparent chokehold to bring him to the ground during an arrest burst into tears Saturday at a Harlem rally in his honor. Eric was confronted by police trying to arrest him on suspicion of selling untaxed, loose cigarettes on a Staten Island sidewalk, authorities said.

NEW YORK — New York City police say two officers involved in the arrest of a man who died in custody are being placed on modified duty.

Police identified one of the officers Saturday as Daniel Pantaleo. They say he's an eight-year veteran of the force.

Commissioner William Bratton says an officer with four years on the job is also being assigned to desk duty while 43-year-old Eric Garner's death is investigated.

Police haven't identified that officer.

The police union called Pantaleo's reassignment a "completely unwarranted, knee-jerk reaction."

Authorities say Garner went into cardiac arrest while being arrested on suspicion of selling untaxed cigarettes in Staten Island.

Video shows the 350-pound Garner becoming irate and refusing to be handcuffed. An officer then places him in what Bratton says appeared to be a chokehold.