COLUMBUS, Ohio — Columbus city leaders expressed disgust Friday evening after the city of Memphis released video showing a man being fatally beaten by five officers earlier this month.
The video shows police beating 29-year-old Tyre Nichols for three minutes on Jan. 7. Nichols' family and lawyers likened the beating to the infamous 1991 police beating of Los Angeles motorist Rodney King.
Nichols died three days later after the assault. The five officers involved have been charged with second-degree murder and other crimes.
Mayor Andrew Ginther tweeted a statement calling Nichols' death incomprehensible.
Columbus Police Chief Elaine Bryant released a statement Friday evening, saying she was "heartbroken and saddened" after watching the videos released by the Memphis Police Department.
Columbus City Council President Shannon Hardin said Nichols killing was "another unacceptable and sickening incident of brutality."
Public Safety Director Robert Clark said the officers charged in Nichols' death showed "an utter lack of humanity."
You can read their full statements below.
Bryant full statement:
“After watching the videos released from the Memphis Police Department, I am deeply heartbroken and saddened. The actions of these former officers do not represent the standards we hold here at the Columbus Division of Police. Our officers are trained to treat every individual with dignity and humanity. We respect our community’s right to voice their frustration and will give them the space to do so peacefully. We will continue to listen and work together to build trust. I am committed to ensuring this agency sets the standard for police and community relationships.”
Hardin full statement:
"Our hearts are with the family and loved ones of Tyre Nichols, the residents of Memphis, and Black and Brown people all over our nation. The recently released video illustrates yet another unacceptable and sickening incident of brutality. We must use this violent abuse of power as a catalyst in our efforts to seek a more just and safe nation."
Clark full statement:
"I am sickened by what I just witnessed. The utter lack of humanity displayed by these officers flies in the face of the oath taken by law enforcement everywhere.
For those of us who have dedicated our careers to public safety and public service, the acts seen in this video are simply unconscionable.
I ask you to join me in praying for the family of Tyre Nichols, and echoing their calls for peace and justice."