S.C. law enforcement agencies respond as Tyre Nichols protests grow
Columbia, SC (WOLO) — The violent beating death of 29 year old Tyre Nichols is sparking a national outcry in various cities across the country.
Many shocked, saddened and upset over the circumstances surrounding the Tennessean’s arrest and death three days after being pulled over by police for allegedly driving reckless.
As of Friday night, just hours after the Memphis Police Department released video of the incident, protests were reported in Memphis, Washington, D.C., New York, Philadelphia, Atlanta, California, Chicago, Boston, Dallas and Detroit. Protestors say they are speaking out in hopes of seeing the five former officers held accountable, and are demanding justice and reform. Below is video of some of those protests reported by ABC’s Em Nguyen. We want to warn you this video contains images of of the attack and may be hard to watch.
Local law enforcement agencies throughout the Palmetto state are responding to the video, and subsequent death of Nichols.
Columbia Police Department Chief Skip Holbrook took to social media saying in part,
“The brutal beating and subsequent death of 29-year-old Tyre Nichols at the hands of five police officers in Memphis, Tennessee is both indefensible and criminal. The incident captured on police body-worn cameras is expected to be released later today by the District Attorney’s Office. It will likely evoke outrage, disgust, and anger. These reactions are understood and warranted.”
Richland County Sheriff Leon Lott relaying his disgust over the video showing the five now former Memphis police officers accused in the beating saying,
“I watched the video and found it to be terribly disturbing. The actions of those officers are despicable and in no way reflective of what this profession stands for. Those officers were entrusted to uphold the law. They betrayed that trust and deserve to be charged accordingly. My prayers are with the family of Tyre Nichols.”
Sheriff Lee Boan with the Kershaw County Sheriff Office speaking out on Facebook.
The South Carolina Law Enforcement Division (SLED), Chief Mark Keel Also releasing a statement Friday night saying,
“Police officers must be held to the highest standard. The unspeakable actions of these officers
erase the many positive strides law enforcement has made in communities across the country in
Police officers who choose to betray the oath they are sworn to uphold should be criminally
charged and prosecuted to the full extent of the law.
Law enforcement is an honorable profession, but the actions of these five officers tarnish the
badge of every officer who is committed to policing with professionalism, integrity, respect, and
I understand that people are upset. I am upset, too. I fully support your right to protest peacefully so that your voices can be heard. I urge any protest to remain peaceful and lawful. I commit to you that the law enforcement community in South Carolina will continue to build positive relationships with the communities we serve. Any officer who breaks the law will be held accountable.”