Tyre Nichols: Memphis police release bodycam, surveillance videos


(NewsNation) — Authorities Friday released body camera footage of Tyre Nichols’ arrest, which showed five Memphis police officers beating the 29-year-old Black FedEx driver as he called out for his mother during an arrest earlier this month.

The officers, all of whom are Black, were charged Thursday with murder and other crimes in the killing of Nichols, a motorist who died three days after the Jan. 7 altercation with the officers that occurred during a traffic stop.

The officers involved, Tadarrius Bean, Demetrius Haley, Emmitt Martin III, Desmond Mills Jr. and Justin Smith, were fired last Friday for the use of excessive force or failure to intervene and render aid.

Developments related to the release happened throughout Friday night: additional officers were put on leave and protests sprang up in cities including Memphis, Chicago and New York.

The Memphis Police Department released four videos of the arrest: three from body-worn cameras and one from a street surveillance camera.

The videos show the officers repeatedly kicking, punching and beating Nichols as they yelled “give me your (expletive) hands” while they attempted to place Nichols in handcuffs. Officers had chased Nichols through Memphis streets after he ran from them during the initial traffic stop, where they pulled him from his car and tried to subdue him on the ground.

After the first officer roughly pulls Nichols out of his car, Nichols can be heard saying, “I didn’t do anything,” as a group of officers begins to wrestle him to the ground.

“Get on the ground!,” one officer yells, as another is heard yelling “Tase him! Tase him!”

Nichols replied soon after being wrestled to the pavement, “OK, I’m on the ground.” Moments later, as the officers continue to yell, Nichols says, “Man, I am on the ground.”

An officer yells, “Put your hands behind your back before I break your (expletive).” Moments later, an officer yells, “(Expletive), put your hands behind your back before I break them.”

“You guys are really doing a lot right now,” Nichols says loudly to the officers. “I’m just trying to go home.”

“Stop, I’m not doing anything” he yells a moment later.

Throughout the beating, Nichols screams and cries out for his mother as police use pepper spray and stun guns on him. At points, he says “alright” and signals that he has given up, but officers continue to attempt to place his hands behind his back.

At one point, while Nichols is standing in the street with officers holding him, another officer punches him repeatedly in the face. At least two officers are seen kicking or stomping him in the head as he lay on the ground.

President Joe Biden released a statement shortly after the release.

“Like so many, I was outraged and deeply pained to see the horrific video of the beating that resulted in Tyre Nichols’ death. It is yet another painful reminder of the profound fear and trauma, the pain, and the exhaustion that Black and Brown Americans experience every single day,” the statement read in part.

Memphis Police Chief Cerelyn Davis described the officers’ actions as “heinous, reckless and inhumane,” and said Friday that her department has been unable to substantiate the reckless driving allegation that prompted the stop.

The city of Memphis put out a statement Wednesday saying it will fully cooperate with the investigation.

Nichols’ family members viewed the video Monday. In a news conference Friday, his family said they want the specialized police unit known as the SCORPION Squad disbanded. The officers involved in the altercation were part of that unit.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Trending on NewsNation