Major US cities brace for possible violence ahead of the release of video related to the death of another black man at the hands of police. We look at how people are reacting to the whole episode online.
Tyre Nichols, a 29-year-old Black man, died on January 10, several days after he was brutally beaten by police in Memphis, Tennessee.
His death and the news that he was tortured by policemen have reignited debate about police brutality. As authorities prepare to release the footage, tensions are high.
Nichols was stopped by police officers near his mother’s house on January 7 for what the Memphis Police Department said was reckless driving.
After a chase ensued, police beat him up badly, according to several media reports. Nichols later died.
US authorities have charged five officers with second-degree murder over the incident. The officers, who are all Black, have also been charged with aggravated assault, aggravated kidnapping, official misconduct, and official oppression, District Attorney for Memphis Steve Mulroy said on Thursday.
According to several media outlets, Nichols' family members and their attorneys have seen a recording that they say shows a three-minute beating. Officials have said the video will be released soon.
Twitter has reacted strongly to the incident.
President Joe Biden called for calm and backed "peaceful protests", saying the incident deserves a swift, full, and transparent investigation.
Jill and I extend our hearts to the family of Tyre Nichols – they deserve a swift, full, and transparent investigation.— President Biden (@POTUS) January 27, 2023
Tyre’s death is a painful reminder that we must do more to ensure that our justice system lives up to the promise of fairness and dignity for all.
Congressman Steve Cohen also called people to remain peaceful and calm.
I grieve the killing of Tyre Nichols. With our new leadership, Memphis will see that reform and justice are served.⁰— Steve Cohen (@RepCohen) January 26, 2023
As Memphis and the nation awaits video footage, people may want to protest the brutal actions of the police and should remain peaceful and calm. pic.twitter.com/GT90SO9eGX
A civil rights advocate, Ben Crump, shared a video and called to continue the fight for accountability.
This is who Tyre Nichols was — a talented and dedicated skateboarder with SO much life left to live… He didn’t deserve to be tragically taken from his family and community! We will continue to fight for accountability for you Tyre! #JusticeForTyreNichols pic.twitter.com/hYwMnRRZEA— Ben Crump (@AttorneyCrump) January 23, 2023
Bestselling author Frederick Joseph urged people to not share the video with any Black people, saying "this is going to be another traumatizing moment".
I urge anyone who is not Black to avoid sharing the video of the Memphis police murdering Tyre Nichols with any Black people, unless they explicitly say they want to see it.— Frederick Joseph (@FredTJoseph) January 27, 2023
This is going to be another traumatizing moment with or without seeing the video.
Brandt Robinson, a teacher, tweeted that the killing of Nichols is a devastating lesson about how anyone can perpetuate systemic racism.
The murder of Tyre Nichols by Black police officers is a devastating lesson about how anyone can perpetuate systemic racism. Dismantling systems and institutions rife with racial inequity will take active, anti-racist efforts. ✊🏽🇺🇸🇺🇦 pic.twitter.com/34XG8Qeuu1— Brandt Robinson (@BrandtRobinson) January 27, 2023
Ola Ojewumi, a writer, said sharing videos of Black people dying like this by the state must be stopped.
Tomorrow, they will release the video of the murder of Tyre Nichols at the hands of police.— Ola Ojewumi (@Olas_Truth) January 27, 2023
We say this all the time but stop sharing videos of Black death by the state. We don’t do this with white victims of violence. It’s traumatizing and desensitizing all of us.
Comedian D. L. Hughley said this murder must be seen as a "BlueOnBlack crime" and not a "BlackOnBlack crime".
5 black cops beating #TyreNichols to death ain’t #BlackOnBlack crime it’s #BlueOnBlack crime! #TeamDl— DL Hughley (@RealDLHughley) January 27, 2023