Protests after Tyre Nichols video release expected across US
Protests have been planned from coast-to-coast Friday as law enforcement officials in Memphis prepare to release video in the fatal police beating of Tyre Nichols, a 29-year-old Black man who died three days after a traffic stop on Jan. 7.
The video of the killing, which involved five Black officers, shows “acts that defy humanity,” Memphis police chief Cerelyn “CJ” Davis told CNN Friday. “You’re going to see a disregard for life, duty of care that we’re all sworn to, and a level of physical interaction that is above and beyond what is required in law enforcement.”
That description brings to mind the video of police officers beating Rodney King in Los Angeles in 1991. The acquittal of the officers involved in that incident set off many protests.
The incident also comes more than two years after the murder of George Floyd at the hands of Minneapolis police – also caught on video – spurred local protests and a global racial justice movement.
The family has asked supporters to protest in peace. During a press conference on Friday, Rodney Wells, Nichols’ stepfather, said, “More than anything we want peace. We do not want any type of uproar, we do not want any type of disturbance.”
LIVE COVERAGE:Memphis to release footage of traffic stop that led to death of Tyre Nichols
Cities from Portand, Oregon, to Washington, D.C., anticipate protests
Organizations and individuals across the country have said they are planning or expecting protests Friday. Chicago, New York, Detroit and Portland are among the cities where gatherings were planned.
The first scheduled protest in Memphis is slated to take place at 5:30 p.m. local time at Martyrs Park.
Meanwhile, in Atlanta, tensions were already high over the law enforcement killing of Manuel Esteban Paez Teran, an environmental activist said to have shot a state trooper. Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp on Thursday declared a state of emergency.
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