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RWRJ Statement Regarding the Police Killing of Tyre Nichols

In the aftermath of yet another brutal police killing of a Black man, Tyre Nichols in Memphis, TN, Racine Women for Racial Justice applauds the swift action by the local Chief of Police and District Attorney to fire and charge the five men responsible. It is our hope that further investigation will hold all individuals and agencies accountable for their actions or lack thereof.

This case differs from others in that the officers who beat Nichols were all Black, as well as the Chief of Police in Memphis, Cerelyn Davis, which makes it unlikely this attack was racially motivated. However, it illustrates that egregious incidents such as this require immediate action, including the public release of video footage and other evidence. No matter the race of the officers involved, excessive use of force is unacceptable and must be punished to the full extent of the law.

In the words of the Nichols’s family attorney, Ben Crump, “We now have a blueprint, America, and we won’t accept less going forward in the future. We won’t have Black officers treated differently than white officers. We want equal justice under the law.”

“The integrity of Chief Davis in this matter stands out for us,” said Kelly Scroggins-Powell, executive director of Racine Women for Racial Justice. “Unlike the many excuses we’ve seen in our community to avoid disciplining officers involved in violence against Black inmates and suspects, Chief Davis was forthright with the evidence and took immediate action. We intend to hold this case up as a model for how both law enforcement and district attorneys can and should be transparent with the public.”

RWRJ extends its sincere condolences to the Nichols family for this senseless tragedy and stands in solidarity with them as they seek justice for Tyre.

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