Tyre Nichols brutally murdered by Memphis police
Community demands release of video
Memphis, TN. – On January 10, 29-year-old Tyre Nichols died in the hospital after sustaining injuries from five Memphis police officers. Nichols was found to have died due to extensive bleeding. Nichols was reportedly pepper sprayed, tazed and then beaten after being restrained. The family's attorney, Antonio Romanucci, made comments to the press emphasizing the extreme brutality of the murder.
There have already been protests in Memphis held by friends and family of Tyre Nichols, where they shouted the common phrase, “Say no more. Release the video!” demanding footage of the murder of Nichols.
In news interviews, Tyre Nichols’ cousin, Jamicka Hill, has compared the extent of Nichol's injuries to those of Emmet Till. The video footage was so violent that many in his family were not able to finish watching it.
Authorities were unclear about when the video showing the execution of Tyre Nichols would be released [it is to be released January 27]. The Memphis police have prepared for massive protests.
The five officers who were responsible for the death of Nichols were fired on Friday, January 20, and were arrested on charges of 2nd-degree murder on January 26th. The responsible officer's names are Tadarrius Bean, Demetruius Haley, Emmit Martin III, Desmond Mills Jr. and Justin Smith.
Capitalist news outlets have focused on the fact that the offending officers are African American, claiming that this means the murder was not an example of racist discrimination. This is an argument that misses the forest for the trees. African Americans in the United States are an oppressed nationality, who are oppressed as a group both economically and with state violence at the hands of the police. Unarmed Black people are murdered by police with regularity. Regardless of the race of particular officers, the function of the police as an institution is to protect private property and enforce the oppression of African Americans, as well as other oppressed nationalities.
Tyre Nichols' family and the broader community of Memphis have taken to the streets to demand justice. The George Floyd uprising of 2020 showed the power of nationwide, mass mobilization against racist police killings. The frantic efforts at cover-up and damage control on the part of the Memphis Police Department, as well as authorities preparations to subdue mass protests, show that the ruling class is afraid that Tyre Nichols' death has the potential to spark unrest.