On Friday (January 27), the city of Memphis released body cam and sky cam footage of the arrest and subsequent assault of 29-year-old Tyre Nichols. Nichols was pulled over in a traffic stop by five police officers who then began to assault the motorist. Ultimately, Nichols was hospitalized for his injuries and died days later.
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America got a first-hand account of the video after receiving word from Nichols’ attorney, the police chief of Memphis who fired the five officers involved, the FBI and others who detailed the video as “graphic” and “appalling.” Protests and moments of silence were announced across the country for Nichols, an avid skateboarder, photographer and the father of a 4-year-old son.
“I have spoken to several people who have actually seen the video. … I have been told it’s disgusting, it’s damaging; it’s not good even slightly,” councilman Frank Colvett, Jr. told FOX13 before continuing later: “It’s bad. That was one, the overarching thing that I heard.”
“This is worse than Rodney King,” Memphis police chief Cerelyn Davis told CNN’s Don Lemon on Friday.
Ahead of the video’s release, numerous individuals, such as Questlove, warned people about viewing and resharing the video as another moment of “Black trauma porn,” as evident by dozens of police videos involving men and women killed at the hands of law enforcement.
“For The Love Of God. Torture P*rn Is Not Going To Serve Your Soul. #TyreNichols,” the Academy Award winner tweeted.
Others on social media echoed Questlove’s sentiments. In contrast, others took in the video as America once more questions policing, race and more in a way that has become more than the new normal in the wake of the 2020 killing of George Floyd.
You can see more reactions to the video below