On Saturday (January 26), former President Barack Obama and former First Lady Michelle Obama reiterated their calls for police reforms following the beating of Tyre Nichols.
In a joint tweet, the two pointed to the “vicious and unjustified beating” of Nichols by Memphis, Tenn. police, that eventually led to his death as a “reminder of far America still has to go in fixing how we police our street.”
The pair stated that it was the responsibility of everyone to “mobilize” to ensure change is enacted. The tweet ended with a link to the Obama Foundation, showing communities how to “reimagine public safety” to prevent injustice and crime.
The tweet included an image of the 29-year-old Nichols and followed the release of body camera and surveillance footage of the incident. The footage shows five Memphis officers beating the black motorist, who they allege was driving recklessly.
Initially, the police department claimed the officers only engaged Nichols physically after he was pulled over and attempted to run away from them.
However, footage contradicts those claims, showing police officers dragging Nichols out of his vehicle before wrestling him to the ground.
At this stage, Nichols ran away from officers, who caught up with him and proceeded to beat him for three minutes.
The video footage also shows that it was 20 minutes after the beating ended that Nichols received any medical attention.
Nichols died three days after he was hospitalized.
Other political leaders, including President Joe Biden, have also been outraged by the incident.
The officers involved in the incident have since been fired and charged with multiple crimes.