Rev. Al Sharpton

Nashville, Tenn. (TN Tribune) – Rev. Al Sharpton, Founder and President of the National Action Network (NAN), issued the following statement on the release of body camera footage showing the relentless police beating of Tyre Nichols, which ultimately led to his death three days later.

On Saturday, Rev. Sharpton will address Nichols’ death at the weekly NAN Saturday rally at the House of Justice in Harlem. He will then host Nichols’ parents and attorney Ben Crump on PoliticsNation at 5 p.m. on MSNBC. Rev. Sharpton will then deliver the eulogy for Nichols in Memphis on Wednesday morning.

“Once again, we are forced to watch another horrific video of cops using brutal force to kill a Black man. Nearly three years after the murder of George Floyd shook the world, here we are. This video should be all a jury needs to convict each of the five officers who relentlessly beat Tyre Nichols to death. Justice needs to be delivered for Tyre and his family. I don’t think anyone who could stomach getting through this footage would disagree.

Those who go out to protest tonight must respect the family’s wishes to remain non-violent. We are all outraged, but anyone who turns violent only helps the defendants. The more you act up, the more these cops will only use it as an excuse for their despicable actions.

The sad reality is police brutality will be an ever-present threat for Black and Brown Americans unless cops continually see that those who use blunt force will go to jail. They need to understand that a badge isn’t a shield that lets them kill someone during a traffic stop. And the only way to do that is through convictions and legislation. I thank the Justice Department for opening a civil rights investigation and urge its lawyers to be swift and transparent. Our entire nation must come together to condemn this grotesque violation of human rights.”