The video is filled with violent moments showing the officers, who are also Black, chasing and pummeling Nichols and leaving him on the pavement propped against a squad car as they fist-bump and celebrate their actions.From Reuters:
Tyre Nichols repeatedly cried, "Mom! Mom!” as the five Memphis police officers now charged with the Black motorist's murder pummeled him with kicks, punches and baton blows after a Jan. 7 traffic stop, video released by the city on Friday showed.From the Wikipedia article:
Tyre Nichols died January 10, 2023, three days after being beaten by five Memphis Police Department officers during a traffic stop. The Memphis Police Department initially stated that Nichols had been driving recklessly, but its chief later stated that footage showed no evidence of probable cause for Nichols to be stopped (though stressing that cause might nonetheless have existed). Following the traffic stop, an initial altercation ensued during which officers deployed pepper spray and a taser. Nichols fled on foot, and within a short distance, a second altercation occurred when Memphis Police Officers caught up with him, then punched and kicked Nichols's face, and hit his back with a baton. Media outlets reported that the footage did not show Nichols appearing to provoke officers during the beating. He was hospitalized in a critical condition and ultimately died.This is a synched video of the entire attack. Individual videos are embedded separately below. You must click through to watch it on YouTube because it is age-restricted due to its brutality.
Five officers, all African American, were fired from the police department. An autopsy commissioned by his family found "extensive bleeding caused by a severe beating". On January 26, the five officers involved were arrested and charged with murder, kidnapping, assault, and misconduct. The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation and the United States Department of Justice have both opened investigations. Furthermore, two Memphis firefighters who were involved in the initial patient care of Nichols were relieved of duty, pending an internal investigation.
Video 1 (Police-issued body worn camera at an intersection. There is no audio for the first minute.):
Video 1 from City of Memphis on Vimeo.
Video 2 (Pole camera shows officers beating Tyre Nichols, no sound from this camera):
Video 2 from City of Memphis on Vimeo.
Video 3 (Police-issued body worn camera video at a second location, a residential neighborhood. There is no audio for the first minute.):
Video 3 from City of Memphis on Vimeo.
Video 4 (Police-issued body worn camera video at a second location, a residential neighborhood. There is no audio for the first minute. Tyre Nichols surrounded by officers, none of whom render aid):
Video 4 from City of Memphis on Vimeo.
I hate these type of videos, dark,hard to see, grainy, incomplete. Cops definitely poorly trained and I wonder about their psychological evaluations. Sadly we will never know the whole story, why so many punches and kicks. They say 90 some percent of these incidents are related to non compliance or resisting arrest. why aren't the police outfitted with gear to quickly tie arms and legs. This would make resisting futile and keep things from getting out of hand and allow justice to happen in a court room.ReplyDelete
They were beating him from the start, when he was complying, before he ran. The police officers got out of hand. This is not about lack of compliance.Delete
This is being universally condemned from all parts of the political spectrum and from police organizations. Again, they were beating him long after he was _unable_ to resist and congratulating each other on their accomplishment. They knew the cameras were on but didn't think it would matter. Too many times complying is not enough to satisfy the police.Delete
And then they didn't render aid.
He was not complying in the beginning of the first video, he was struggling and arguing with the officers. This doesn't excuse the punching and kicking that happens later. My point is that there needs to be a way to stop things before they get out of hand.Delete
I believe it was Chris Rock who did the comedy routine which had a lot of truth in it about dealing with the police. The gist of the piece was speaking when spoken to and saying yes sir and no sir and doing what you are told. People all know this but ignore any way.. People are always saying how they were afraid to get out of the car or whatever but the problems almost always start after they ignore Chris Rock's advice. So I would argue the real systemic problem is lack of respect for authority that is prevalent in today's society.Delete
"there needs to be a way to stop things before they get out of hand" and police are supposed to be trained in this, in de-escalation, but here you have growing numbers of police officers piling on to escalate a traffic stop into an attack that caused Tyre's death.Delete
He asked what he had done, and they cursed at him and forcibly pulled him out of the car. He wasn't given the opportunity to "comply" and when he did, the beatings continued and worsened. They beat him to _death_. There were at least 10 officers present. The high-fiving congratulatory attitude of the officers enjoying a smoke break over his body is despicable. Even police and law enforcement professionals are calling this out. They've been charged with _murder_ for pity's sake. His level of compliance is not what caused this. To defend these cops in this case because Tyre didn't comply quickly enough or show the proper respect? Dear God in Heaven, have mercy on us all if the police continue to have that kind of power. Tyre is not responsible for the escalation or for his own death.
This was a traffic stop, which at this point seems to have been for no legal reason. Police response was horrific. Armed agents of the state should not be allowed to execute people on the streets of our cities. To suggest this was justified because these officers were dissatisfied with the level of respect shown for their authority is a clueless response and just leads to more police thugs feeling that no use of their authority is an abuse of authority. To say if only Tyre had shown the proper level of respect he would be alive today shows a deep misunderstanding of what police officers are like and what they get away with with impunity. Attempts had been made to file complaints against these officers before now, but these were ignored. If those had been taken seriously Tyre might be alive today. This is not an issue of citizen compliance and proper respect but of police violence and abuse of authority and lack of accountability.
Further investigation continues into the other officers involved, what connection they might have had personally with Tyre, and why aid was not rendered. I expect more officers to be charged.
So awful! At one point in that one video I thought I counted ten men there!ReplyDelete
Yes, they stood around smoking and making comments about what they had done.Delete
One of the videos was restricted. I watch two of them. In the one--at one point I thought I couldn't ten officers there. So awful! I'm glad they were fired.ReplyDelete
Age-restricted due to the brutality, yes. You have to watch it there at the host site.Delete
...this is more than just 5 bad cops!ReplyDelete
It's not about a few bad apples, you're right.Delete
Some people on Twitter have posted some lovely video of Tyre skateboarding, saying this is how they want to remember him. I decided that I had to watch part of a video, to bear witness to the poor man's beating. I blame testosterone, and power hungry animals for this. Too many cops do this. It is shameful what humans can do to one another.ReplyDelete
Many are using one of his photos as a cover photo on Facebook. He has a photography website for his hobby. He liked sunsets. There's a culture in the police that needs attention.Delete
I can NOT watch this or other videos showing mans inhumanity to man. I am sickened to the core of ALL the violence that just seems OK (for some) in our country. We are a doomed society if things don't change. The sad thing is that prejudice and hate doesn't change. Especially with a government that feeds both.ReplyDelete
It's horrifying. And yet nothing changes :(Delete
Understandably this has featured on our UK news.ReplyDelete
I am using Jenn's last sentence here because, 'It is shameful what humans can do to one another.'
All the best Jan
There is a deeply rooted culture within the department that allows for this kind of abuse. We need systemic change.Delete
I have a LOT to say about this "event." First, I want to commend the citizens of Memphis for the PEACEFUL marches they have conducted. No looting, no setting fires, etc. Just peaceful and considerate, like Tyre's mother requested.ReplyDelete
Second, I don't know who Anonymous is, but I quote his/her comment "the real systemic problem is lack of respect for authority that is prevalent in today's society" didn't understand that this man WAS being compliant, respectful, and trying to de-escalate the situation, only to realize it was not working. He only ran away when he realized his life was in danger.
What bothers me is they left a white cop guarding the car, then chased after him. They already HAD his car, his registration, his license plate. At this point, it would be extremely impossible not to learn who he was and where to find him. Instead, they chased him down and beat him to a pulp. That is what I call HERD mentality. If it had been ONE officer, Tyre would still be alive. However, when a herd of bullies get together, they feel emancipated and emboldened. They do things they would NEVER do on their own. And why did the paramedics sit around for 16 minutes before administering aid.
OFF my soapbox, but still angry that another black man was killed for NO apparent reason. And still proud of Memphis citizens.
I think "Anonymous" may be Bob, who I've had interesting interactions with both here and on his own blog. There's difficulty with signing in on Blogger sometimes, and I'm assuming that explains the anonymous comments. I'm doing a lot of assuming...Delete
Amen, sister! It's shocking that they knew cameras were rolling and thought it wouldn't matter. I can't help but think that means they've acted like this before with the difference being nobody died.
A few days before the incident with Tyre, another black man was stopped by this unit. For some reason (I didn't catch the entire interview) they let him go. He called Memphis IA twice and twice he got no call back. If IA had called him back, Tyre might have still been alive.Delete
Unlike George Floyd who supposedly used a fake $20 bill to buy cigarettes, Tyre did nothing to even warrant the traffic stop. This is an even worse offense. These men need to get more than 2nd degree murder, especially if the man who called IA can show this was premeditated.
Getting anything looked into is impossible. The charging decision is based on the difficulty of proving in court that this particular act was premeditated and meant to kill him. My guess is this behavior is standard operational procedure with them and they've just been lucky not to have killed anybody 'til now. My guess is they didn't mean to kill him, but didn't care how bad the victim would suffer. No telling how many people are stuck with hospital bills, in jail for lack of bail money, and trying to prove their innocence in court in the face of that solid blue police word against their own.Delete
The police reports written afterwards appear to diverge significantly from what can be seen via the camera/audio record. That's part of what's being investigated.
The whole event was tragic and very sad. It's scary that some police officers, who we were taught to respect, can have no respect for others. It is hard to respect them back when events like this happen.ReplyDelete
If police officers think this kind of behavior is acceptable, no amount of training will fix it.Delete
This is so tragic. And I can't help but think WHY are we STILL fighting these battles, these same stories after so many years? Don't we ever learn? Don't you wonder if this was the first time? I think probably not. Thanks for a thought provoking post, Nita. It's something we cannot hide.ReplyDelete
I've no doubt they've acted this way before, just nobody died. People are coming forward with their own stories. It's scary.Delete