Civil rights activist Al Sharpton was "doing his thing" when he coached the mayor and police commissioner of New York City on the death of a black man that was apparently the result of a chokehold by a white policeman, said real estate and entertainment mogul Donald Trump.
New York' Democratic Mayor Bill de Blasio held a roundtable meeting July 31 that included Sharpton and city Police Commissioner Bill Bratton. The discussion focused on the death of Eric Garner that followed an altercation with police on July 17, reported the New York Daily News
Sharpton told de Blasio that if someone else had been the father of his son, Dante, he would "be a candidate for a chokehold." He also gave Bratton some advice for how to prevent repeated incidents by the police department.
"You got to deal with training," Sharpton said during the meeting, according to the Daily News. "But, I also think, commissioner, that the best way to make police stop using illegal chokeholds is to perp-walk one of them that did . . . It will send a lesson that 10 training sessions will not give them."
"People go to Al. And, Al is, you know, he's become quite a leader," Trump told "Fox & Friends" on Monday. "As far as Al is concerned, Al is doing his thing."
Trump called Sharpton "a friend of mine" who he knew "very well." He said Sharpton was a "true character," adding he was "much different" from what people might suspect.
"He's not the bad guy that a lot of people think he is. Nonetheless, he is telling the chief of police here in New York City and the mayor how to do their jobs. But, that's just Al Sharpton," Trump said.
The incident between the police and Garner was a "terrible situation," Trump said, adding, "That cop was so aggressive, it was ridiculous."
Trump also said Sharpton recently came to his office to offer an apology for calling him a racist.
"He called me a racist. And, he came up to my office to apologize. He said he didn't mean it," Trump said. "I respect him for that."
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